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How we organise

Our structure

Living Rent tenants and community union is organised from the bottom up. We build branches - usually in a neighbourhood - where people organise to take action on local issues. Branch members elect their leadership, a committee who is accountable to local members and to the wider vision of the union. When there are enough local branches in a town or region, they form a city or regional forum to coordinate their campaigns and actions. 

Branches work together on national campaigns, through the National Forum. The National Committee, which is composed of members elected by the annual general meeting as well as co-opted members, is legally responsible for the organisation and ensures that the organisation respects its values, the strategic directions given by its members and that it has good governance.

We have active branches across the country. You can check out the events near you and get in touch if you want to build your own branch.

How we are funded

As a union, we function through a dues model: our members support us and this means that we are accountable to members and put members' interests first. We feel very strongly about being democratic and member-run: your member dues keep us working for you, our members. 

You can join here.

Trade unions have also supported our work by affiliating to Living Rent. We are grateful for such support and if you want to ask your union branch to affiliate, contact us

We also seek external funding to support our activities and enable the growth of the union.

We receive some funding from People’s Health Trust using money raised through Health Lottery Scotland.



National Committee

Every year, members elect the national committee during Living Rent's annual general meeting.The current committee is:

  • Chair: Aditi Jehangir: Leith member, programme development manager for a charity.
  • Secretary: Ruaraidh Dempster: Gorgie Dalry member and adviser for energy charity.
  • Treasurers: Zineerah Ali: Govanhill member, law student; supported by Elise Corry, Leith member.
  • Staff liaison: Andrew Kellard: Dennistoun member, employment adviser trade union.
  • National Forum Co-Chairs: Barbara Welsh, Partick member and Joey Simons: Govanhill member and educator; supported by Elli Folkesson, 
  • Membership officer: Cameron Beattie, Govanhill member.
  • Trade Union liaison: Danny Pilkington, Leith member.
  • Spokespeople: Annie Craig: Govan member and full-time carer; and Beatrice Onashile, Govanhill member.


We currently have a small number of staff who work alongside elected leaders to support the union's growth:


  • Emma Saunders - National Organiser
  • Ewan McLennan - Field Director
  • Jon Black - Operations Manager
  • Rufus Bouverie - Communications Officer
  • James Roberts - Membership Organiser
  • Emily Donnelly - Research Organiser
  • Chris Cullen - Social Media Officer

Glasgow and West Coast:

  • Sonja Coquelin - Glasgow City Head Organiser 
  • George Lavery - Glasgow Organiser - Castlemilk
  • Glenna Jones - Glasgow Organiser - Toryglen
  • Gavin McLements -  Glasgow Organiser - Govan
  • Levi Mitchell - Glasgow Member Defence Organiser

Edinburgh and East Coast:

  • Sinéad McNulty - Edinburgh City Organiser 
  • Izzi Brannen - Member Defence Organiser
  • Matthew Kirk - Edinburgh Organiser Leith
  • Niamh McNulty - Edinburgh Organiser Lochend

We are a Living Wage employer.

Acorn international

Across the world, tenant and community unions are fighting for this common vision. We are part of ACORN International, an international movement that shares knowledge, builds collective power and mobilises in solidarity.

ACORN International is building a movement across the world to take on the challenges facing poor and working-class people in developing economies and polities. 

Acorn affiliated groups  build community organisations in these countries to mobilise poor and working-class residents to fight for their rights and build democratic culture and institutions. 

Through local membership-based organisations in Latin America, Africa, and Asia, ACORN International fights for the basic rights of people – better security, health, housing, education, and employment conditions, and a more responsive, truly representative government.

International finance’s demand for profits drives it to exploit all corners of the world with no regard for society or the environment – we must be ready to challenge it.

You can learn more and support the work of ACORN International here.

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  • rufus bouverie
    published this page in About us 2024-04-18 14:10:33 +0100