New health job for former top Stormont spin doctor

Former journalist David Gordon begins work at the Department of Health on Monday
Former journalist David Gordon begins work at the Department of Health on Monday

A former journalist who was the top spin doctor at Stormont for just six months before its collapse is set to direct communications for the Department of Health.

David Gordon will start his new role this coming Monday on a salary between £68,961 and £79,058. He will join the under-fire department just days before a public consultation on controversial multi-million health cuts ends.

It was announced in September last year that Mr Gordon was to become the top spokesman at the Executive Office after being approached by the then-first and deputy first minister.

A few months later the RHI scandal began to emerge, and December and January were dominated by the scandal – culminating in the collapse of the government and triggering of an election.

One of the casualties of the failure to restart devolution was Mr Gordon’s £74,500-a-year post.

Mr Gordon had previously worked for The Belfast Telegraph, and began in the industry at the Larne Times and Newtownabbey Times.

Earlier this year, after losing his job at Stormont Mr Gordon returned to work for the Nolan Show for a short period where he had previously worked as an editor.

A spokesman from the Department of Health said: “David Gordon will be joining the department on October 2 2017. The key responsibility of the role will be to lead all communication activities associated with the roll out and implementation of the transformation agenda, launched in ‘Health and Wellbeing 2026 – Delivering Together’.

“Salary for the post will be within the Senior Civil Service Grade 5 Band range (currently £68,961-£79,058) within which annual pay progression will be in line with the NICS Senior Civil Service pay policy.”