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Left Archive: Documents from the Trade Union Campaign Against Repression, c.1978 December 14, 2020

Posted by leftarchivist in Uncategorized.

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Many thanks to the person who forwarded these documents to the Archive. One is a Submission of Labour Movement Delegation to Labour Dáil Representatives from Paddy Healy, then PRO of the Trade Union Campaign Against Repression, outlining the repressive measures taken in Northern Ireland by the security forces. In particular it focuses on the death of union activist Brian Maguire in Castlereagh. It calls for the Labour movement to cease its silence and inactivity ‘on continued repression in the North’.

Also attached is a petition from TUCAR exhorting the British government to ‘put an immediate end to the torture of suspects’ signed by a range of union leaders.

Here’s a post written by Alan Mac Simoin on the precursor organisation “Trade Union Coordinating Committee Against Repression. As Alan noted:

This grouping, which soon changed its name to the less cumbersome Trade Union Campaign Against Repression, was set up in 1977 by a mixture of left republican and socialist trade unionists concerned about the growing use of the courts in industrial disputes and the increasing curtailment of civil liberties on both sides of the border.

As Alan also noted:

TUCCAR’s biggest success was undoubtably in May 1977, when they called a strike in Belfast in protest at the death of AUEW shop steward Brian Maguire at the hands of the RUC in Castlereagh barracks. About 2,000 came out, from jobs like the Royal Victoria Hospital and the Kennedy Way industrial estate. All the strikes were in nationalist West Belfast, though I do know that some large jobs in East Belfast were leafleted by a couple of younger members. And that was a very courageous thing to do at the time.

Here’s a contemporaneous report from Militant on the death of Brian Maguire.

Please note: If files have been posted for or to other online archives previously we would appreciate if we could be informed of that. We always wish to credit same where applicable or simply provide links.


1. Trade Union Campaign Against Repression (TUCAR) | Paddy Healy's Blog - December 14, 2020

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roddy - December 14, 2020

As you may recall I posted a couple of days ago about new book “anatomy of a killing” by Ian Cobain.The book deals with the Brian Maguire incident as he was one of the “suspects” taken to Castlreagh in relation to the shooting of an RUC photographer.Cobain covers all aspects of the shooting and all those involved in it and is likely to be a good read.However as I said before ,Castlereagh more than anything else about the troubles outrages to such an extent that I could’nt read it in a dispassionate way.

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