HC Deb 28 October 1976 vol 918 c689
9. Mr. Fitt

asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether he will make a statement on the working of the Fair Employment (Northern Ireland) Act.

Mr. Concannon

The Act comes fully into operation on 1st December 1976. Meanwhile the Fair Employment Agency has been established and the Department of Manpower Services has circulated a draft guide to manpower policy and practice to interested persons for comment.

Mr. Fitt

On how many occasions has the Agency met so far, and what payment has been made to its members? Has it embarked, on a questionnaire basis, on finding out whether firms in Northern Ireland are engaging in political and religious discrimination?

Mr. Concannon

I am glad that my hon. Friend is still taking an active part in this legislation. I should like to thank him for the assistance he gave us when it was going through the House. The main part of the legislation does not come into force until 1st December. All we have done is to set up the Agency. All the other aspects will come into force on 1st December, when the Agency will get down to its job. The chairman will be salaried. The other members of the Agency will be paid an attendance allowance plus expenses and travelling.