Corporations have their lobbyists in Washington, D.C. The people need advocates too.
That’s where we come in.
Public Citizen is a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization that champions the public interest in the halls of power. We defend democracy, resist corporate power, and fight to ensure that government works for the people – not big corporations. Founded in 1971, we now have 500,000 members and supporters throughout the country.
We don’t participate in partisan political activities or endorse any candidates for elected office. We take no government or corporate money, which allows us to remain fiercely independent and call out bad actors – no matter who they are or how much money and power they have.
We use every tool at our disposal to take on big fights – and win . We mobilize activists to grow democratic movements, watchdog Congress, sue the government when it fails to do its job, petition regulatory agencies to safeguard the public, and engage in cutting-edge research that effects change.
Need someone to explain how corporate influence in a policy area affects people? We can help. We have experts on a wide array of issues — from money in politics, trade, and health care to energy, banking, and access to the courts.
See who works in the public interest every day.
Join us at Public Citizen, and help us represent the public interest in the halls of power. We champion good government, a strong regulatory system, a clean and sustainable environment, affordable and safe health care, citizen access to the courts, corporate accountability in the trade arena, and more.
Our boards of directors work in tandem to plan Public Citizen’s future and adjust to the ever-changing present. Public Citizen Foundation board members focus on research and public education, while Public Citizen Inc. board members focus on lobbying and organizing.
In the halls of power, Public Citizen has represented citizens for nearly two generations – through the awakening of the consumer movement; the struggle for health, safety, environmental, and marketplace safeguards in the 1960s and the 1970s; the corporate backlash of the 1980s and 1990s; financialization and corporate globalization in the 2000s and 2010s, and the abuses of Big Tech and monopoly power in the 2020s. The organization has battled for patients who are prescribed dangerous drugs, workers exposed to toxic chemicals, motorists with unsafe vehicles, voters with corrupt representatives, citizens exploited by energy companies, and more.
“Public Citizen, the Sentinel of Democracy,” a book published in 2016, takes readers through the years and highlights the most salient accomplishments by the first generation of Public Citizen leaders – achievements that have altered the American marketplace, government and political culture in ways that reverberate today.
At Public Citizen, our starting point is what we think is right, not what others say is 'reasonable.' Time and again, we’ve shown that we can take on corporate power, change the terms of debate and win transformative victories for health, safety, justice and democracy.Robert Weissman, president
Often the best way to fight for change and stand up for ordinary people is by joining forces with like-minded allies. Public Citizen leads and partners with dozens of state, national, and international coalitions.
Read all about the work we have done to advance the public interest each year. You can find our 990s here as well.
We welcome your comments, questions, and feedback. Here is information to guide you to the right person who can answer your query.