Within this assignment I am going to write about what a pressure group is and will choose two pressure groups to explain and discuss how they have changed the government policies. I will also state the pros and cons of both of these pressure groups. The pressure groups I am going to be talking about are ash which is Action on Smoking and Health and also Child Poverty Action Group.
What is a pressure group?
A pressure group is described as an organised group of people that don’t put people up for election but they do seek to influence the government’s policies and legislation. Pressure groups are all so known as interest groups, lobby groups and protest groups because some people may take it as if they actual use pressure to achieve their aims which doesn’t necessarily happen. There are more pressure groups in the UK then there are political parties because the membership of political parties has fallen whereas the pressure groups have increased.
Outsider groups are those whose aims do not enjoy the support of the Government. They tend to adopt media based, high profile campaigns to capture public attention.
An outsider group in the Scottish context would be the football fans pressure group Fans against Criminalisation (FAC). FAC wished to see the Scottish Government drop its plans to tackle sectarianism in football believing that existing laws could serve this purpose, if enforced. While individual MSPs may have met with FAC, the organisation had to resort to protests and internet campaigns, lobbying SNP MSPs from the outside. FAC used the traditional outsider group method of mass demonstration.
By contrast, insider groups have the support and attention of Government. Government will often approach them for advice. They will often have long standing and regular discussions with Government. A good example here is the work of Scottish members of the British Medical Association.
It supports Government plans to tackle problem drinking and has offered expert medical advice to the Government to support its plans. Insider groups will rarely organise demonstrations or marches. Instead, they will rely on regular meetings with Government, often behind the scenes away from the cameras to influence decision making.
ASH (Action on Smoking and Health).
This pressure group is there to try to get people to stop smoking and to basically wake up and see the affects smoking has on your own body and also to realise that you could be harming the other people around you by second hand smoking.
This pressure group has been very successful within changing the governments mind about smoking and the laws around it. Some of the recent things that they have recently been able to get done is a law about ‘smoking in cars with children present and the government is bring this new law in from 1st October 2015.
This pressure group is well known as it has changed a lot of the government’s policies around smoking and in my opinion I would say that there aren’t any cons with this pressure group as it is doing a good thing for the health of everyone and especially for children who don’t have a voice.
CPAG (Child Poverty Action Group).
This pressure want’s a society where all children can enjoy their childhoods and have fair chances in