Catholic discrimination in Northern Ireland in terms of Housing and Employment

Authors Avatar

There has been a long history of violence, prejudice, and discrimination between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland, particularly highlighted throughout the 1960s, when Catholics were discriminated against by the Protestant Stormont Government in both employment and housing. Hence, in order to understand in what ways and how much it occurred, both these areas must be investigated.

Firstly, one must look at how the Catholics were discriminated against in terms of employment, and to what extent this occurred. 

In the public sector, Catholics suffered great difficulties being employed, as there appears to have been some bias towards employing Protestants, especially in senior levels of the civil service. For example, in a report by the Cameron Commission in 1969, it is stated, “[As of October 1968] In County Fermanagh, no senior council posts, (and relatively few others) were held by Catholics” and according to the Sunday Times, in the same county, in 1961 “322 of the [370] posts, including the top ones, were filled with Protestants. This shows how during the 1960s, the Catholics in Fermanagh did not have many jobs at a high level in the public sector. This is particularly interesting because the majority of people in Fermanagh were Catholics, hence highlighting the extent of their discrimination. The Sunday Times also wrote that in Derry “of 177 salaried employees, 145 earning £124,424 – were Protestant, and only 32 – earning £20,420 – were Catholic” showing the dramatic differences in wages as well as representation between Catholics and Protestants. With the former being far more poorly paid, one can clearly see a significant amount of discrimination against Catholics in a different respect.

Join now!

In the lower class public jobs, such as manual work, Catholics were represented more, or more accurately under represented less. For example, it is confirmed by the census of 1971, that Catholics are under represented by less that 1% in education (lower class public service), yet in the higher class government and administration, they are under represented by 6.7%. This shows that even though they were discriminated against less as the level decreased, there was still a fair amount of discrimination among all levels of the public sectors throughout the 1960s, both in terms of representation and in terms of wage.


This is a preview of the whole essay

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay


This is an excellent response that is clearly written and uses evidence to offer precise support to the analysis. At times, there is an over reliance on specific examples and statistics were needed too but these may not have been widely available. 5 out of 5 stars.