National Consumer Coalition Launched

Group to provide experts on wide array of consumer issues

Feb. 4, 1997, Washington, D.C.--Members of several leading public policy groups gathered today to launch the National Consumer Coalition (NCC), an on-going coalition which will promote the consumer value of a market economy. The NCC was formed to provide a balance in public policy debates on consumer issues. Its members believe that too often "one-size-fits-all" regulations are pushed under the guise of helping consumers, but in many cases they only serve to limit consumer choices, raise costs, and jeopardize the safety of individuals.

"Individual consumers are better off making their own choices in the marketplace," said Fran Smith, Executive Director of Consumer Alert, a member of the coalition, "and the NCC will work to ensure that consumers are allowed to make more of those decisions for themselves."

NCC represents over 800,000 Americans through its members, and they range from grass-roots activist organizations such as Americans for Tax Reform, to free-market oriented think tanks, such as the Competitive Enterprise Institute, to state level public policy groups such as the Heartland Institute (see following sheet for a complete list of NCC members). What they all agree on is that a market economy benefits individual consumers by expanding choices, increasing competition, and fostering innovation. They also agree that many government policies harm consumers by substituting policy makersí values in the place of individual values.

Among the broad issue areas the NCC will cover are housing, transportation, food, health and safety, the environment, utilities, tax policy, financial issues, and telecommunications. Within these issue areas, the NCC has access to specialists on wide range of topics, such as air bags, estate taxes, social security, agricultural price supports and subsidies, air quality, and FDA reform, among many other consumer issues.

For more information on the NCC please contact Rich Zipperer of Consumer Alert at (202) 467-5809.

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