We recently learned that Allison Boyd, joint Branch Secretary of Portsmouth Health Branch, lost her battle with cancer. James Smith, Regional Organiser remembers her.
Allison joined UNISON in 1990 and became a steward/health & safety representative in 1994. She became branch Women’s Officer in 2000, Assistant Branch Secretary in 2005, a Union Learning rep in 2006 and has been Branch Secretary since 2009. During this time she was an employee of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.
Allison gave hour upon hour of her own time to supporting members predominantly at the Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth and in many surrounding NHS and non-NHS employers. Allison had no aspirations to take senior office at regional or national levels of the union and instead focused unwavering dedication to serving members at local level.
She was an absolutely essential part of the team, keeping the branch stable through significantly difficult periods. In many ways she seemed remarkably unphased by the challenges in front of her and the wider the branch, just remaining consistently focused on delivering key responsibilities of representing members.
Perhaps Allison remained so calm and focused due to her key attributes of kindness, a great sense of humour and the fact that she did not wish to take herself too seriously, despite how important she was to those around her who depended on her care, guidance and dedication to helping them.
In recent years Allison was diagnosed with cancer and took time out for recovery. Even despite her illness and reduced mobility, during a period of recovery at the beginning of 2020 she even planning to return to help the branch office with telephone calls and correspondence. Unfortunately it was not to be and Allison sadly passed away on 30th March with her close family by her side.