UNISON mourns the tragic loss of Lorna Mooney

The much respected campaigner and Deputy Regional Convenor died suddenly on 15 July 2019

UNISON South East is mourning the tragic loss of Lorna Mooney, our Deputy Regional Convenor, who died suddenly on the morning of Monday 15 July.

Our thoughts and heartfelt condolences go to her family, friends, colleagues and fellow trade unionists, as they mourn and come to terms with Lorna’s tragic and unexpected passing.

Lorna’s branch – Portsmouth City – has written a beautiful tribute to an inspirational and determined colleague. She will be missed by all who knew her in UNISON, having been active and much respected for many years locally, within the region, and at national levels of our union.

Few people are as openly and deeply committed to our union’s values as Lorna was. Enabling equal participation and seeking justice were rooted within her at the most fundamental levels – they were simply who she was. Her quick wit in meetings and the genuine interest she took in the welfare of everyone around her will be missed greatly at regional meetings and events.

We understand that Lorna spent her final Sunday at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. She spoke many times of her love of motorsport and affectionately referred to herself as a ‘petrolhead’. It is of some small comfort to know that she spent her last day doing something she loved so much, in the company of people she cared for.

Steve Torrance
Regional Secretary | UNISON South East

It is with very great sadness that that I have to inform you that Lorna Mooney died early on Monday 15 July. Our condolences and thoughts go out her husband Andy and to all her family and friends. Lorna was a wonderful person and she will be greatly missed.

Lorna was long standing UNISON activist in the Portsmouth City Branch, the South East Region and at a national level. She held many official positions in UNISON including Vice Chair of the Branch, Deputy Regional Convenor and as one of the region’s representatives on the National Joint Council Committee.

Lorna has been active in UNISON ever since she worked at Corben Lodge residential unit for people with disabilities. Despite having dyslexia, she went on to qualify as a social worker and became an extremely well thought of and highly respected higher-grade social worker in adult social care. Her determination to overcome challenges to pursue her chosen career inspires and encourages others to follow in her footsteps.

Lorna was a passionate defender of social justice, equality and fairness. This was very apparent in both her social care career and in all her trade union work. Lorna would always listen to other people’s points of view but when she had made her mind up about something she would not back down. Lorna had a deep understanding of the trade union movement. More importantly, she felt it and trade unionism was part of her.

The last time many of us saw Lorna was at the Branch Committee on 3 July. As usual her sense of humour and fairplay were on display. When she took over the chair so I could propose a motion, I remember the glint in her eye when she tapped her watch and told me very firmly I had gone over my time and should stop talking. Lorna would always speak her mind and was not frightened to sometimes be in a minority. Fair debate and democracy was what was important to Lorna.

There are so many people in UNISON who will miss Lorna. She touched so many lives. Lorna was a true public service champion. We are proud she was in our branch and that we had the privilege of working alongside her. We will not forget our dear comrade Lorna.

Jon Woods
Branch Chair | Portsmouth City UNISON (on behalf of the Branch Committee)