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The Chung Collection

Order in Council [Government of British Columbia] Jan 18, 1883

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 46 Vic. Chinese Immigration.
Calling  the  attention  of the  Dominion  Government to the immense influx of
Chinese into the Province.
By Command.
Provincial Secretary.
Provincial Secretary's Office,
18th January. 1883.
Copy of a Report of a Committee of the Honourable the Executive Council, approved by His
Honour the Lieutenant-Governor on the 19th August, 1882.
The Committee of Council advise that the attention of the Dominion Government be
again called to the immense influx of Chinese into this Province, consequent upon the Railway
Contractor importing large numbers from Asia, and to the following facts:—
That the employment of Chinese, as carried on, is practically establishing a system of
slave labour in the Province.
That at the present time there are about twelve thousand Chinese here, and that more
than one-half of that number are employed on the Canadian Pacific Railway.
That Chinese being largely employed, drives white labour away from seeking work thereon.
That Chinese, as a class, are injurious to a young community, as they trade almost exclusively among their own people, send all their earnings to Asia, introduce loathsome diseases
and demoralizing habits, put the authorities to constant expense in endeavouring to suppress
crime among them, and in granting charitable aid to their sick and infirm.
That they manage to evade punishment for crime, and payment of their taxes.
That they are a non-assimilating, alien race; and that the Australian Colonies of Great
Britain, and the States and Territories of the United States of America, are protected from
their presence.
That British Columbia is the only portion of the American Continent on the North
Pacific, above Mexico, where Chinese now have the unrestricted right to land.
That the Congress of the United States have passed a law, which came into effect on
theJ 5th of August, 1882, which prohibits all skilled and unskilled Chinese labourers from
coming into the United States unless having certificates from the Collector of an American
port that they resided in the United States previous to August, 1882. Government officials,
merchants, or privileged classes are permitted to come, provided they are entered on a separate
passenger list, but they are not allowed to land until examined by the United States Collector
or deputy. Chinese labourers cannot travel through the United States or touch at any ports
thereof on their way back to China, unless in case of distress. The penalty for the violation
of this law is the absolute forfeiture of the ship. Chinese Immigration. 1883
That Queensland, Australia, in 1877, passed a Statute which received the assent of the
Imperial Government, which prevents any vessel arriving with a greater number of Chinese
than in proportion of one to every ten tons of the tonnage of the vessel, under a penalty of
ten pounds for each Chinese passenger carried in excess.
That the immigrants of all other nationalities are practically excluded from the Province
by the knowledge that so large a proportion of the population is Chinese; and the settlement
and progress of the Province is very materially retarded.
That a large proportion of the Chinese recognize no laws except the orders of the companies who employ them.
That, in pursuance of a Resolution of the Legislative Assembly of the Province, dated
31st July, 1878, no Chinese are employed on any Provincial Public Works, or in any way by
the Provincial Government; and a stipulation is put in all contracts that, in the. event of the
Contractor employing Chinese, the Provincial Government will not be responsible for the payment of the work.
The Committee therefore request that the Dominion Government may be urged to promote
the necessary legislation for the purpose of preventing immigration of Chinese to this Province,
and for the prevention of their employment upon Dominion Public Works; and further, to
provide that in the event of any Charter being granted for a Hallway or other Public Work in
British Columbia, a clause may be inserted preventing their employment thereon.
The Committee advise that a copy of this Minute be forwarded to the Dominion Government.
(Signed) W. J.,
Provincial Secretary,
and Clerk, Executive Council.
VICTORIA: Printed by Richard Wolfenden, Government Printer,
at the Government Printing Office, James' Bay.


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