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SOME SOCIAL RESULTS OF IMMIGRATION
In seeking for some of the social results of immigration, inquirers seem disposed first of all to ask if there has been a directly traceable increase in crime. The belief that immigration is a fertile source of crime has long been held in the United States, yet the more recent studies seem to indicate that either there is no scientific ground for such a belief or that information available is insufficient to warrant a con
clusion. A study 15 of the place of origin of the 1870 persons
164 New Zealand
146 Other British possessions
4 At Sea
98 Not Stated
. 1,870 These figures do not seem to reveal anything about relation of incidence of crime and country of origin. They simply show that each group contributes a small quota which as shown in the full report varies slightly from year to year. Thus here, as in the countries previously studied, it cannot be said with certainty that immigration increases the rate of crime. One would need a complete history of the individual crimes in the same age groups to arrive at any definite conclusion. Mere conjecture is of no value.
So far as can be learned, immigration has placed no burden upon the charitable institutions of the country. The kind of people permitted to seek homes in New Zealand have the stamina necessary to fight successfully their own economic battles. Thus does a policy of wise restriction redound to the glory of any immigrant-receiving country. Extreme isolation has developed an interesting phase of British civilization in New Zealand, which as we have seen is in no danger of being changed. Incoming settlers enter at once into enjoyment of the life of the Dominion; they are quickly assimilated because they have, after all, traveled half way around the earth only to come to their own people.
18 Statistics of the Dominion of New Zealand, 1920, Vol. I,
IMMIGRATION AND PROTECTIVE LEGISLATION IN AUSTRALASIA (Continued)
THE LURE OF GOLD As is well known, the first rush of free immigrants to Australia was about the middle of the last century because of the discovery of gold. The first free settlers recorded arrived in 1793. It was said that the penal colony at Botany Bay maintained for some time by the British Government made little perceptible effect on the permanent white settlement of the colony. The first convict ship landed its cargo in 1786, the last in 1868, although assignments of convicts was discontinued as early as 1838. As a rule causes which operate to make men criminals at home, prevent them from becoming successful citizens amid new and often unfavorable surroundings. An abnormally high death rate prevailed in the Botany Bay colony. According to Doctor Thwing' much of the strain that has survived is found today in anarchists and other agitators bent on destructive measures. A distinguished Australian 2 with whom the writer recently discussed this matter contradicts Doctor Thwing's statement and maintains that no odium attaches to the descendants of convicts for the reason that they are practically all rich and important socially because their ancestors, on the expiration of their sentences were given large tracts of land which they developed to the enrichment of their progeny. It must be borne in mind that many of these people were political prisoners or sentenced for some of the thousand and one offences not now included in the category of crime in any civilized country. But few of the ne'er-do-wells survived to blight the national strain.
1 Human Australasia, page 50. * Captain Kilroy Harris, D.S.O., M.C., F.R.G.S., F.R.CI.
DIVISIONS OF COMMONWEALTH The Australian Commonwealth was formed of the six provinces New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, East Australia, West Australia and Tasmania by Imperial Act in 1900, and proclaimed in 1901. The habitable portions are mainly a coastal fringe of large cities as follows: 3 City
TOWN LIFE MOST ATTRACTIVE
Much of the territory outside of the cities is known as the “Never, Never Land” and offers almost insurmountable difficulties to new settlers. They tend to grow discouraged on the land anywhere and flock to the cities and thus form an effective argument against even white immigration to the laborers already established in the cities. To a greater extent, perhaps, than anywhere else in the world, labor organizations in Australia are determined to keep wages high and the working day short. An eight hour day won, means a six hour day to be fought for, a programme discouraging to capitalistic enterprises. This is probably one of the reasons for the slowness with which industries develop in Australia. The production of wealth is not the Australian's God, yet he is mildly interested in developing his country. Manufacturing industries are carried on as in New Zealand, mainly to meet the demands of home consumption, and present no great variety. In the year 1920, there were in the six states 16,291 establishments in nineteen industrial categories employing a total of
• Census of 1920.
374,734 employes. These workers the native population can supply. There is never any unemployment, and local labor leaders insist that a stream of immigration large enough to produce an over-supply of labor shall not be permitted. Immigrants are, however, desired to develop the natural resources of the country which are many, and vary from pearl fishing to wool growing. In the former, the diving is done by Asiatics under the direction of white men.
TOTAL IMMIGRANTS The actual number of immigrants going into Australia since the gold excitement subsided is small, but as the years have passed, the impact of these has been upon a small nucleus of settlers. The numbers arriving from 1861 to 1919 inclusive are given below: Year
An influx of about a million immigrants in fifty years has not changed the character of the population. They are practically all British, only about two per cent. coming from other European nationalities, and about four-fifths of one per cent. from Asiatic races. Owing to the expense of the journey from the British Isles to Australia, there has been much assisted immigration. The different states of the common
* Official Year Book, No. 14, 1921, page 388–91.