Margaret Sanger, "Bermuda," .
Source: " Margaret Sanger Papers, Library of Congress Microfilm LCM 11:1173."
For a handwritten draft, see Margaret Sanger Microfilm, Smith College Collections S71:927; for another copy of this document, see S71:932.
The annual report for 1936 also disclosed the plans and preparations in progress for an active campaign against syphilis and gonorrhea.
The Bermuda Hotel Men’s Assoc. has asked the Health Dept. to provide facilities for the periodic examination of all men and women employed in hotels to insure as far as possible, that such employees be free from communicable diseases.
Added to this group should be those who seek work in private homes, food shops and laundries. It was requested to see that employees have a health card to present to their prospective employers to show they are in sound health and free from such communicable ailments.
In the enlargement of clinics there will be a department for advice in contraception to do its best to lessen the problem of too many people untrained for useful work.
Here again is a forward looking influence and “While the legislature was disinclined to put these diseases upon the list of notifiable diseases it is likely to enact restraining powers upon those people who habitually spread them.”
This of course is unfortunate. The only way to stop the spread of communicable or transmissible diseases is to treat them as such and consider them as small pox, typhoid, measles and other diseases should be treated--by isolation and treatment.
Bermuda is an ideal place to live in with no “depressions” in sight or in the rear--at least in over 300 years and not since 1860. Before that time they had two (?) but the question of taxation is interesting. There is no income tax--no inheritance or death tax--no estate or gift or personal property tax--no school, no nuisance, no poll or no sales taxes. Only a tax for those who own real estate and that amount is at the rate of less than $3.00 a thousand. Bermuda is not a democracy and that’s why there is peace and contentment on the island.
Less than 10% of its citizens can vote. Only adult males owning 60 pound or $300 worth of land have the suffrage. But there is one representative in the legislature for every 900 of the population. Here you see every child and child of the colored population well dressed and clean and tidy. Never have I seen so large a group of working colored people so well fed and clothed as you see all over Bermuda.
Here again are no criminal class. No gangs--no underworld--no kidnaping--no lynchings. Never in the history of this island has there been a lynching. There are no restrictions of race, religion or color regarding acquisition of property. But only 2,000 acres of its 12,500 acres can belong to aliens (including Americans). This makes the section of such aliens important. They have a policy of selection and investigation and such alien must make formal application to the Governor in Council--his name is then published in the press and objections can be raised and can be heard. The Governor investigates the applicants reputation and standing and has power to refuse. This power of the Governor’s has resulted in a homogeneous character of alien residents and has prevented that most objectionable of all booms--the land boom. Here there is only now beginning the social service such as baby clinics but the health Dept. will see to it that this sort of palliative interest patterned after American ladies use of their leisure time will go hand in hand with constructive social work. The Bermudean women themselves see thru this and many of them have refused to join the ranks of American to organize welfare clinics, baby creches etc. knowing that it will encourage the diseased to breed and prolong the lives of the types who become dependent and remain depend from the cradle to the grave. Not a dependent but a resistant population is what is wanted and here it has been and still remains in Bermuda.
Copyright, Margaret Sanger Project