Files refer to ex-IRA Chief’s work rules and their use in NI

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Amongst the files released under the 20/30 year rule is correspondence relating to the application of the MacBride fair employment principles to United States companies operating in Northern Ireland, including DuPont in Londonderry.

The principles - which were drawn up by the former IRA Chief of Staff and Amnesty International co-founder Seán MacBride in 1984 - were designed to protect minority employees and prevent discrimination.

The new files released under the 20/30 year rule are from the Northern Ireland Department of Economic Development.

One of the files is listed as: “File correspondence and reports concerning the application of the MacBride principles to American firms trading in Northern Ireland.

“Included are American Brand (New York), then owners of Gallagher’s Ltd, Hughes Tool Co., Texas (Hughes Tool Co., Monkstown and Belfast), Oneida cutlery (Bangor), Ford Motor Company (Belfast), Armco and DuPont (Londonderry).”

Another of the released files is listed as: “File details the complex legal debate concerning equality and an end to discrimination in the workplace in USA, and UK government response to MacBride, in particular with regard to issues like flags and emblems displayed at workplaces in Northern Ireland.”