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AUCKLAND, August 15. The ‘ Observer ’ states that the Government have ordered Dr Giles, R.M., to hold an inquiry into the charges made against an official holding a high position in the Customs Department in Auckland. The inquiry is to open next Tuesday, and will be private. The allegation ia that the official imported a number of obscene pictures and disposed of them by an illegal raffle. A number of people in good positions are said to have taken tickets. The ‘ Observer ’ says : “It is not so generally known as it should be that New Zealand law recognises the sale of children—in other words, legalises the most objectionable form of chattel slavery. The Adoption of Children Act passed a few years ago makes the transfer of parental responsibilities easy, and enables strangers and aliens to acquire full rights over children whom they may wish (from whatever motive) to adopt. This is equivalent to legalising the sale of children ; for the highest English Courts have held that whatever may be legally transferred can also be legally trafficked in, and we have no doubt the increase of children in the charitable institutions of the colony could be largely traced to this unsatisfactory law. Another deplorable result is seen in the horrible maltreatment of orphans and adopted children, of which we frequently hear from different parts of the colony. The case of the girl Eayers at the Thames has lately been eclipsed by the terrible usage to which an adopted girl has been subjected at Christchurch. There ought to be some action taken to prevent such brutalities being inflicted upon helpless children. Those humanitarians who expend their time, cash, and sympathy in preventing and punishing cruelty to animals might turn their attention to this matter. Is there not need for a society for tho prevention of cruelty to children in New Zealand ? We think there is, and one of the first steps should be the repealing of that law which renders the adoption of children such an easy matter, and virtually reduces them to the position of goods and chattels.”

A nurse has patented a small portable bath-tub made of rubber cloth. It is puton a wooden framework, light but stout, with pockets at the ends for soap, sponge, and so on. The whole shuts up like a camp-stool into a very small space, and is of the greatest convenience in the sick room or for travelling.

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Bibliographic details

SPECIAL TELEGRAMS., Issue 7987, 16 August 1889

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SPECIAL TELEGRAMS. Issue 7987, 16 August 1889

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