Emma Saunders 149sc

Emma Saunders

Emma Saunders's activity stream

  • Recruitment: Living Rent is recruiting a remote organiser

    Passionate about memberrun organisations? Living Rent is looking for a remote organiser to support its growing membership across Scotland. This position will join and support a growing team of organisers in Scotland with the aim to establish and strengthen branches outwith the areas where there are full-time neighbourhood organisers.

    This is a fixed 12 months full time contract at Living Wage.

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  • published The fight for our cities vacant land in Achievements 2021-03-15 19:25:43 +0000

    The fight for our cities vacant land

    Across Scotland, we have seen over 66 000 public homes being demolished, leaving large vacant land sites like gapping holes throughout our communities. Despite the housing crisis that Scotland faces, neighbourhood branch after branch sees these plots being prioritised for buy-to-let and luxury developments, in an ongoing attempt by city planners to 'mix' our communities, bringing in more expensive housing instead of the genuinely affordable homes we need.

    This is why across Glasgow, members are rising up to fight for this land to be prioritised for social and public housing, built to the highest environmental standards and reflecting our needs and vision.

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  • Fix our Homes - Getting our homes fit for the future

    Refurbishment - making our homes more energy efficient - presents a huge and 'shovel' ready opportunity for Scotland to tackle fuel poverty as well as the health impacts related to poor housing conditions, whilst taking head on the combined threats of climate change and the economic crises resulting from the global pandemic and Brexit.

    Several branches of Living Rent are taking this challenge head on: asking for the total refurbishment of their blocks, the changing of drafty windows and the implementation of district heating schemes. This is also a key challenge of private sector homes and as Scotland prepares to host COP 26, members throughout Scotland are organising to get the government to commit to ambitious refurbishment targets, in order to deliver the homes Scotland needs.

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  • published Stopping evictions in Achievements 2021-03-14 11:33:59 +0000

    No evictions under Covid restrictions

    During the pandemic, members and tenants have been at the forefront of fighting against evictions and ensuring that no one would be made homeless in the midst of a pandemic.

    Members first won the first eviction ban in Scotland's history in March 2020. Since, we have been organising up and down the country to get these protections extended.

    From September 2020 until March 2021, members supported each other when threatened with eviction, won a further ban of evictions from the 9th of December and managed to get it extend in January 2021 and then again in March 2021 to ensure that no tenants would evicted during a pandemic.

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  • published Freeze rents: The battle continues in News and Events 2021-03-14 11:28:14 +0000

    Freeze rents: The battle continues


    Living Rent's national campaign against the rent hikes in social housing reaches national television. Councils and housing associations, are you listenening?
    Don't accept the increase. Be heard. Fill out the consultation.


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  • published Housing as a feminist issue in News and Events 2021-03-14 11:27:42 +0000

    Housing as a feminist issue

    Housing is one of the primary sites of social reproduction; a home is made from the unpaid and emotional labour that has historically been carried out by women.

    The labour that takes place within the home is centred on sustaining life, rather than accruing profit. It should come as no surprise that women have been and continue to be central to the housing movement. Living Rent is no exception.


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  • Collina street: The occupation continues


    Since January 2021, members of the Wyndford and residents across Maryhill have been occupying Collina Street, locally know at 'The Valley', to stop the sale by the Glasgow Council of this former site of public homes for private development. They are occupying the land until their demands for it to be used for community managed, environmentally friendly, housing for social rent are met.

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  • published Protecting tenants during the pandemic in Achievements 2021-03-08 19:28:29 +0000

    Protecting tenants during the pandemic

    In March 2020, like so many people across the world, our lives were up-ended by the Covid-19 pandemic.
    As Scotland and the rest of the UK prepared for lockdown, we knew that tenants across Scotland would be the worst hit and that protection against evictions were direly needed. When staying at home was the best way to stop the spread of the virus, it was essential for homes to be secured.

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  • published Tackling short-term lets in Achievements 2021-03-08 19:08:20 +0000

    Tackling short-term lets

    Across Scotland, but particularly in Edinburgh and the Highlands, more and more housing is being used as holiday accommodation for growing numbers of tourists. Due to the housing crisis, Living Rent has long-held that these properties should first and foremost be long-term affordable homes rather than holiday lets.

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  • Up the standards: Fight for a better standard of repairs

    Across our branches, one issues that keeps coming up is the poor standard of repairs across social and public housing.

    Tenants are made to live in house unfit for occupation: ongoing damp, black mould, leaks and recurring poor standards of repairs leave tenants facing enormous heating bills, health issues from the damp and mould as well as stress of having to live in such conditions. Local member defence teams support tenants to fight for individual repairs, however we know that broader structural changes are needed too.

    Muirhouse Action November 2020

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  • Why you should join your tenants' union!

    From our member Maria Torres Quevedo:

    "As urban planner Raquel Rolnik states in a recent interview on the podcast A World to Win: “A house is a portal to other human rights: access to education, a good environment, access to health, access to cultural and economic opportunities.” Through my experience with Living Rent, I would add to this that a house can connect you to your street, your block, your city, and these, in turn, can help you make your house a home – not just as a building, but as part of a community. 

    All of this marks a significant shift in our collective narrative about our homes, our cities, the country, even the world we share. The housing market is not a god that should decide our fate; it’s up to us to build a community where people's needs are met. This work isn’t done, but your neighbours are doing it, and you can join them.

    Read the entire article here.

    Tenants' Unions

  • Living Rent's manifesto: Why our demands matter

    Our members wrote for Bella Caledonia about the background to our manifesto's demands:

    "Let’s remind ourselves, since we got our parliament back, Scotland demolished 66,000 public homes, and sold off nearly half a million more through right to buy, ultimately leading to the takeover of our public housing in places by rapacious private landlords. We can stop this. We must stop this. Poverty and despair is rising, but we still have opportunity to change this. The only force that ever changed anything is organised people."

    Read the entire article here.

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  • No SERCO evictions - Holding corporate power to account

    In September 2019, Serco’s Home Office contract to house asylum seekers came to an end, in part as a result of the pressure exerted by public campaigning led by a coalition of refugee and asylum seeker advocacy groups, of which Living Rent was part. Mears Group secured the tender for the new contract and, despite mass public outrage at Serco’s handling of the situation, still failed to find a solution to house the 300 tenants under threat, enabling Serco to carry out evictions. 

    As Living Rent had established in 2018 when this issue first arose, members of Living Rent Glasgow were committed to resisting this policy of forced destitution, and we launched a summer offensive campaign of direct action to defend our neighbours and communities.This fight continues, led by the No Eviction network, see here.


    No photo description available.

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  • published Making the case for rent controls in Achievements 2021-03-03 11:27:58 +0000

    Making the case for rent controls

    Living Rent built itself notably on the sustained efforts by tenants between 2014 and 2016 to shape the 2016 Private Housing Act. After a two year long campaign for secure, quality and affordable housing, the union won legislation which provided more secure tenancies and a first attempt towards rent controls: the rent pressure zones. This was a real victory for the tenants' movement: after 30 years, rent controls were on the table again as a sensible solution to tackle the housing crisis!

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  • Social and Public Housing Rent Consultation

    Fill out the consultation here!

    Rents in social and public housing across Scotland have increased above inflation year on year. Since the pandemic started in March 2020, tenants have been hard hit by decreased income, pushed into rent arrears, and experienced reduced services. Some housing associations and councils have decided to freeze rents, showing it can be done. However, many social landlords are still asking tenants to bear the costs of the pandemic by again increasing rents in 2021. With many having healthy cash reserves due to reduced operations in 2020, this is again putting more stress on tenants.

    Every year, social housing associations and councils consult tenants on proposed rent rises. Few actually listen to tenants' feedback and questions are often rigged from the start. Rent consultations never ask whether tenants want rents increased in the first place or even decreased. They are framed in such a way that tenants only have a minor say in how much more they are going to pay.

    This year, Living Rent is running its own tenant-led consultation: we are asking social housing tenants to fill it out and have their say regarding rents and any other concerns they have with their landlords. In the middle of a pandemic, tenants must have a stronger voice and Living Rent tenants’ union is organising so that this voice is heard!

    Fill out the consultation here!

  • Living Rent is recruiting a member defence coordinator for the East Coast!

    Living Rent is hiring!

    Join our expanding team of organisers to fight for housing that works for people. After a full-on year, we have seen the importance of people coming together and fighting for their rights. As Living Rent grows and expands, so have our member defence teams and we are excited to welcome on board another member defence coordinator, to support member defence teams in Edinburgh and across the East Coast to fight back for their rights. This is a fixed 12 months full time contract at Living Wage.



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