“Seven months after the job was advertised and five months after a shortlist was compiled..”

The assessments of the first 100 days of the “indigenous” deal failed to note one important detail.. namely the first missed deadline [target date? – Ed]. As Chris Thornton reports in the Belfast Telegraph, despite assurances to an Assembly Committee from both the First and Deputy First Ministers that it was their intention to appoint someone before the recess on 7th July, there is still a vacancy for the post of Commissioner for Victims and Survivors, previously held by interim appointee Bertha McDougall. There is apparently a shortlist.. but it would seem that there has yet to be agreement on who should be appointed.

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  • RG Cuan

    Nice to see a post today – is the lack due to the ‘costs of running Slugger’?!

  • al

    Is it a surprise? A slightly tricky appointment and potential banana skin.

    Enough to send our politicians running for the hills

  • Rory

    My thinking too, Al. Who would want to be the one who finally accepts the poisoned chalice as it is passed round the table?

  • Lurker

    I suspect they cocked up the selection process. It will be hard enough to defend the grounds on which Raymond McCord was refused a shortlisting. What if there are others out there who were rejected on similarly untenable grounds.

    The essential criteria were as follows:

    A. Commitment to promoting the interests of victims and survivors of the conflict in Northern Ireland.
    B. An awareness of the consequences of the conflict in Northern Ireland or similar situations elsewhere.
    C. Ability to work with people from different sections of the community who have been affected by the conflict in Northern Ireland.
    D. An ability to empathise with and to communicate with individuals who have suffered bereavement, psychological or physical injury and those who care for them.
    E. High standard of oral, written and presentational skills.
    F. Ability to work effectively with the media in representing an organisation in the press, television and radio.
    G. Experience in office management, including effective management of financial and human resources.

    Of course, the other possibility is that some people think we no longer need a victims commissioner which Denis Bradley and Robin Eames are doing similar work.

  • mmmmmm


    McCord was not turned down for untenable reasons, I think he would have been a shocking choice.

    yes his family have been victims and yes he has experience dealing with the press but that is the extent it.

    Just because you make it into the paper doesnt mean that what you are saying is well thought out, intelligent or articulate infact his interview style for tv is very harsh and aggressive. If he performed that way in the interview for the job…no wonder he didnt get it.

    i think this actually vindicated their decison not to appoint him….noone good enough applied so you wait for/look for someone who is…standard practice especially for such a controversial post.

  • Shore Road Resident

    Then they should have rejected McCord on criteria C and D. Instead the rejected him on criteria B, E and G.
    It stinks.

  • Lurker

    You don’t understand mmmmmm, he wasn’t interviewed. SRR has it right: they were perfectly free to refuse to shortlist McCord, and others, but they are vulnerable to legal challenge if they did it on the wrong grounds.

  • gareth mccord

    an opinion is always welcomed but a load of crap is not! you obviously have links so i wont try to have a debate with you.
    by the way i to dont think my father should have got the job but not for the excuses he has been given as he more than met the criteria.
    The reason we all know why he didnt get the job is because he would get the truth and answers for ALL families and that is not what the government wants!!

  • liamnoir

    Ok then gareth, you agree that your da wasnt suitable for the job but it sounds like you think that he shouldnt have been refused the same job because of what he may or may not have uncovered if he was given the job.
    EH… ???

    Why do you agree with the decision not to give the job to him then ?

  • gareth mccord

    because of his bad health!

  • cynic

    ah…disability discrimination then?

  • mmmmmmmm


    what I posted was personal opinion based on what I have seen of raymond mccord on tv and read in the newspaper. I dont think he has good communictaion skills, I dont think he could present arguments in a rational and concise manner.

    I also dont think he has adequate experience of the conflict and the experience he has had has actually made him less suitable for the job, he is too full of resentment and hatred and hurt to do the job effeciently.

    Frankly I dont think he meets any of the criteria, but then that is just a personal opinion (and cant really be a load of crap because its just that) however as I actual interview people for jobs I know what they would be looking for and at.

    But obviously because I said something negative I must have ‘links’? No I am not against you (if you are gareth mccord) or raymond mccord, the world is not against you but it is this attitude which raymond shares that probably most makes him unsuitable.

    Bad health? that is a reason for him not to apply and a family matter, not a reason not to appoint.

  • gareth mccord

    were do you interview for ? civil service and/or mcdonalds?

  • liamnoir

    were do you interview for ? civil service and/or mcdonalds?”

    Did someone mention poor communication skills ???

  • Dawkins


    “Did someone mention poor communication skills ???”

    Yes, quite pathetic! There are only eight m’s in mmmmmmmm, not ten.

  • mmmmmmm

    @ everyone, ha ha what on earth is going on in here now?

    I am not going to say who I interview for, but it is neither of your guesses. However, it wouldn’t matter if it was, the principles are all the same, its only the standard of applicant and the criteria that changes. The core skills remain the same and it is here that I feel Raymond McCord is let down, so wouldn’t get past the first stage.

  • Dawkins

    “Posted by mmmmmmm on Aug 18, 2007 @ 06:32 PM”

    Aarrgh, seven m’s now!

    Mmmmmmmm, old buddy, some troll or other is pretending to be you. I wouldn’t stand for that.

  • gareth mccord

    we will see who they appoint and if they have more of the criteria? i doubt it!!

  • gareth mccord

    who do you think the current victims and survivors would want. Knowing that the commisioner feels the same loss and that he or she can get to the truth and not be a nodding dog for the government. I think we all know who the people would prefer!!

  • liamnoir

    So then gareth do ya think your da should have the job or not cos you seem to be sayin that you dont think he should get the job yet you think he should get the job.
    Make your mind up will ye…

  • Comrade Stalin


    what I posted was personal opinion based on what I have seen of raymond mccord on tv and read in the newspaper. I dont think he has good communictaion skills, I dont think he could present arguments in a rational and concise manner.

    I’ve seen McCord on TV and I thought the opposite, I thought he was very articulate. Just because someone doesn’t speak with an educated tongue does not mean they have no communication skills.

    I agree with Gareth. I think it was because he would annoy the hell out of the NIO.

  • gareth mccord

    liamnoir ya ye?
    i dont think he should get the job for purely selfish reasons! i want him to concentrate on getting justice for raymond first before helping other victims! Also ive found that nobody has helped or stuck their necks on the line to back our campaign so why should he.
    But he is not like me and wants to highlight and help other victims who have been forgotten and fobed off by our politicians and governments!
    I do not believe in campaigns and inqueries as history has proven no government cuts their own throat. Justice is only served in the street not in our sham courts and the sentences.

  • McBurney

    Not to get caught up in whether one person should or shouldn’t have got the job, but does this drawn-out process not show how ridiculous the idea of a joint office is? It is the victims that are being let down here.

  • mmmmmmmm

    @comrade stalin

    You make a harsh judgment on me, his lack of education (as you describe it) was not a factor for me, I saw no educational criteria for the job and it hasn’t been discussed here either.

    We may disagree, but it is not for that reason.

    I feel for his own purposes Raymond McCord communicates OK at best average – but his story and the fact that he is making a stand makes him more impressive.

    Problem is with an actual job to do that disappears. The actual content of his communications both tv and newspaper I feel are poor, he is too aggressive and too antagonistic (again fine for his own purposes but not as an overarching victims commissioner) he would have to manage his anger more which I dont feel he can do.

    Yes he would annoy the hell out of the NIO which for me is his only positive – and a strong one 🙂 but not enough to get the job, as it isn’t listed in the criteria – although it should be!

    When you also factor in things like background checks and the like (as by their own admission the family is not squeeky clean), he never really stood a chance.

  • gareth mccord

    “background checks”?
    his criminal record is not for drugs, murder, racketeering, extortion or organised crime but only for defending himself against U.D.A. members.
    But what does it matter about background checks considering who is in our government!!
    As for managing his anger? What would an uncontrollable angry person done to peter hain when he fell asleep or why hasnt he broke the law in getting justice??
    think before you speak!!

  • mmmmmmm

    @ gareth

    I always think before I speak, but its that type of rambling anger filled outbursts (that appear to be a family trait) that perhaps best illustrate my point.

    A background check for a government job such as this one, would not simply include a criminal record check, but also a check on all family members and on present and past associations and associates.

    It is as fair a system as you can get, but I take your point about our politicians but its an unusual situation, it is possible that our deputy first minister can run the country but his co accused cannot adopt a child or drive a taxi- but thats a side issue.