U.S. Consumer Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles

U.S. Consumer Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles

U.S. Consumer Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles

U.S. Consumer Interest Groups: Institutional Profiles

Synopsis

These in-depth profiles of major non-governmental organizations show how they compete to protect consumer or business interests ranging across all stages of American life from baby foods to funerals. The analyses of 109 interest groups portray a wide array of the political tactics that have helped shape consumer policy over the past generation. Drawing upon materials from the organizations themselves, as well as from other original and secondary sources, the profiles depict who the groups represent, their goals, how they were founded, their resources, organizational structures and procedures, the services and benefits that they offer, the issues that they address, and the tactics that they use to affect federal policy. Students, teachers, policymakers, administrators, consumer and business activities and interest group watchdogs will learn through this pioneering new reference who gets what in the marketplace and in politics and why.

Excerpt

This volume profiles organized interest groups that have had an impact on consumer protection policy in the United States since 1960. Public interest groups, associations of state officials, trade associations, professional associations, general business associations, unions, think tanks, and policy research centers are included. The organizations are presented in alphabetical order, which makes them easy to find but does not reflect significance, longevity, or other characteristics. Some interrelationships can be seen by the cross-references among the groups: where a profiled organization is mentioned in another's profile, it is marked with an asterisk. More complex interrelationships and categories are discussed in the introduction.

Each profile includes the address or addresses and phone number or numbers for the group, followed by sections headed Organization and Resources, Policy Concerns, and Tactics. The section on organization and resources includes information about the group's founding, whom it represents, basic goals, leadership structure, organization, staff size, budget and its sources where available, publications, and membership benefits such as educational programs. Policy concerns include the issue positions the group has taken, with particular emphasis on those which have been visible, politically important, and more recent in time. In some cases it also describes what major issues the group is anticipating on the political agenda. The tactics section describes group activities intended to influence public policy decisions. These range from monitoring Washington officials to suing opponents in court and include media relationships; grass-roots lobbying; meeting with legislative and executive staff; meeting with members of Congress, executive departments, and the White House; presenting testimony at congressional hearings; commenting on proposed regula-

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