ACORN Canada, the nationwide community union of low-to-moderate income people, is getting organized in Calgary and is hiring its first paid full time organizer.
ACORN organizers build power for working class people!
They do direct outreach, listen to community residents’ concerns, and connect what they want to see changed to effective mass-based action. Organizing protests, developing campaigns, coordinating communications and research, and most important building a powerful group in Alberta!
No experience required, BUT applicants must be interested in fighting for economic and social justice in Canada and be able to explain that in a quick cover letter. Do not apply without a cover letter.
What is ACORN?
ACORN is a multi-issue, mass based union of low-to-moderate income people. ACORN’s purpose is to give low-to-moderate income people the power needed to have their voices effectively heard at the highest levels in the country. ACORN is able to be both a local-based union winning local campaigns, as well as a large scale organization combining forces to fight national corporations and governments that are at the root of most of our problems.
We are a tenants’ union. We are a disability action union. We are a worker’s union. We are a consumer's union. We are whatever our members are. Our members pay dues so that the organization can be sustainable and not dependent on outside funding from government, corporations, or foundations. Each dues member has a vote, and only members speak for the organization. Our members get elected to our board of directors and set our policy and help determine the tactics.
The job of an ACORN organizer is to build formal groups of low-to-moderate income people so they can disrupt and change the systems that negatively impact their community.
The on the job training provided allows someone to learn all elements of running an organization, as well as fundamentals on how to be a community organizer. This includes effective outreach, strategic research, campaign planning, communications, organizing events and actions, getting press to cover our actions and campaigns, and both internal and external fundraising.
The successful applicant will be joining an exciting staff team at the ACORN Canada, and working with organizers across Canada and beyond.
The current priorities laid out by ACORN’s leadership are:
- ACORN Canada’s Rein in the REITs Campaign
- Expanding our groundbreaking Anti-Tenant Displacement campaigns into Alberta.
- Winning Major Tenant Law Reform in Alberta
- Ending predatory lending by pushing for federal and provincial regulations
- Lowering Interest Rate Caps
Responsibilities and Duties
- Work with ACORN leaders to expand both our and national campaigns. Calgary ACORN is new, but has an existing members and leader base.
- Work with our national field director on a day to day basis to learn the basics of ACORN’s organizing methods and techniques.
- 42.5 hours per week - working in afternoons and evenings Monday through Friday.
- Fundraising and asking for money is a fundamental part of an organizer’s job. We are structured like a union: ACORN members pay membership dues. While this is not the entire job, it’s fundamental that organizers sign up members and can ask for money.
- Willing and able to travel to training, and staff meetings (some outside of Canada). **COVID has drastically changed our travel***
- Dealing with multiple tasks in the same day - flexibility and resilience are keys to success.
- Representing the organization in the neighbourhoods, as well as with our leadership at external meetings or events (allies or targets).
Qualifications and Skills
- No paid experience required; professional organizer training provided
- Have strong social and people skills.
- Be self driven and the ability to work both independently but also follow direction.
- Ability to listen in order identify issues that are affecting our people.
- Base compensation is $36,000 annually + transportation allowance (approx $75 per mo) + phone allowance ($20 per mo)
- Health benefits, five paid sick days, and RRSP retirement program included after 6 months.