United States Public Interest Research Group Inc

aka U.S. PIRG   |   Denver, CO   |  www.uspirg.org

Mission

U.S. PIRG's mission is to deliver persistent, result-oriented public interest activism that protects our health, encourages a fair, sustainable economy, and fosters responsive, democratic government by using the time-tested tools of investigative research, media exposes, grassroots organizing, advocacy and litigation.

Ruling year info

1984

President

Faye Park

Main address

1543 Wazee St. Suite 460

Denver, CO 80202 USA

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EIN

04-2790740

NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (W01)

Consumer Protection and Safety (W90)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

U.S. PIRG is an advocate for the public interest. We speak out for a healthier, safer world in which we’re freer to pursue our own individual well-being and the common good. The problems we address aren’t progressive or conservative — they’re just problems that our country shouldn’t tolerate in an age of great abundance and technological progress. And these problems affect us all, whether we live in a blue state, red state or purple state. That’s why we’re working to find common ground around commonsense ideas.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Consumer Protection

Our consumer program works to alert the public to hidden dangers and scams, and to ban anti-consumer practices and unsafe products. Following the economic collapse of 2008, we lobbied to establish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a national regulatory agency with the explicit job of protecting consumers. We continue to work closely with the Bureau to establish new consumer protections. We have also protected consumers from credit company abuses, by playing a crucial role in passing the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act, which protects consumers and reins in the credit card companies' most abusive fees and practices. Following the Equifax data breach, we helped pass a law to require free credit freezes in every state. Our annual report on toy safety, “Trouble in Toyland”, exposes dangerous and toxic toys for sale, and has led to over 150 recalls and other regulatory actions.

Population(s) Served
Adults

We are identifying and responding to threats to public health that affect consumers nationwide. Chemicals that are regularly put into the soil and sprayed on crops have been linked to dangerous health effects, including cancer. Industrial livestock and poultry farms rely heavily on the routine use of medically-important antibiotics, fostering antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” that threaten the effectiveness of antibiotics to treat infections in humans. Personal care products, such as shampoo, soap and fragrance have been shown to contain toxic chemicals that can cause serious health problems. We are asking Congress to act to regulate these threats to public health, and pressuring corporations to take action. We have persuaded major restaurant chains McDonald's, KFC and Subway to transition towards meat raised without antibiotics, and convinced the FDA to continue testing our food for toxic chemical residue. We are also organizing consumers to ask personal care product companies, like Johnson & Johnson and Procter and Gamble, to pledge to be toxic-free.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Our democracy works best when it lives up to the principle of one person, one vote, and when the strength of a citizen’s voice doesn’t depend on the size of their wallet. That’s why we’re working with our national coalition to educate citizens about the solutions we can act on now to amplify the voices of everyday people above those of megadonors and special interests. We are working across the country to bring democracy back to the people by establishing small donor incentive programs and modernizing our voter registration systems.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Multimodal transportation options, like intercity rail and clean bus systems, make our transportation system better for everyone by reducing traffic congestion and pollution, making active transportation like walking and cycling easier, and increasing our options for getting around. While driving’s popularity is decreasing, with more millennials choosing public or alternative forms of transportation, we continue to invest disproportionate amounts of resources and money into highway infrastructure. We are working with our state affiliates to increase public and environmentally friendly transportation options in cities around the country, in order to create a transportation system that works for everyone.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Everyday, Americans throw away millions of disposable products like plastic bags, cutlery, coffee cups, and foam takeout containers. A significant portion of our plastic trash ends up in our oceans while the rest spends hundreds, or thousands, of years sitting in landfills, releasing toxic chemicals and greenhouse gases, and posing serious threats to wildlife and human health. One of the most harmful and preventable sources of plastic pollution is polystyrene foam. We are working with our state-level affiliates to raise the alarm about plastic pollution and win bans on polystyrene and other plastic products at the local, city, and state levels.

Population(s) Served
Adults

As our society keeps producing and consuming ever-increasing quantities of "stuff", we are asking: How can we do a better job of improving the quality of our lives Finding answers to this question is the purpose of our New Economy programs. We run campaigns that advance new and better ideas for organizing our economy and our lives. Right now, we are working on campaigns to give consumers the right to repair their electronics and reduce e-waste, and redirect un-used and wasted food to reduce hunger around the country.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

U.S. PIRG is working towards an economy that first values the quality of people's lives. We are working toward a system in which we can eat food and use products we need without risking our health, and consumers can hold big business accountable. By working toward a transportation system with more and better options, we're safeguarding our environment and creating a system that works for everyone. We're also improving the quality of our democracy by increasing government transparency, getting money out of politics, and removing barriers to voter registration. We are working to win concrete results on real problems that affect millions of lives.

We work to create real, lasting change in our society through the tools of research, advocacy, grassroots organizing, and working with lawmakers. We research and release reports on a variety of issues, and take a fact-driven approach to our work. We advocate on behalf of consumers and everyday people, often standing up to big businesses, special interests and powerful political players. We're eager to reach across the aisle and work with citizens and lawmakers from across the political spectrum to find solutions to the problems that impact us all. With affiliates in 27 states across the nation, and members in all 50 states and DC, a key part of our strategy is to organize at the local grassroots level, and elevate those voices as one on the national stage. Finally, we work with lawmakers to ensure that what is in the interest of everyday people, not special interests or political donors, becomes law.

We have more than 20 national program staff who work with researchers to uncover the facts, than bring our findings to the media, public, and decision makers. In addition to senior staff with decades of experience, we have a program to hire and train the next generation of advocates.

We also work closely with our 27 state affiliates across the country. By collaborating with advocates at the state level, we can hear what strategies are working and messages are resonating at the state level, guiding and amplifying our work nationally. As a federation, we have hundreds of thousands of members and supporters who we educate and mobilize on key issues.

Over the years, U.S.PIRG and our network have won numerous victories for the public. Recent highlights include:

- We convinced major medical device manufacturers to make it easier for hospitals to repair broken ventilators during the COVID-19 pandemic.

- We have convinced major restaurant chains, including McDonald's, KFC, and Subway, to stop purchasing kinds of meat raised with the routine use of medically-important antibiotics.

- For more than 30 years, we have surveyed toys available for purchase and warned parents and caregivers of potential dangers with our annual “Trouble in Toyland" Toy Safety report. This work has led to more than 150 recalls and other enforcement actions of dangerous products

- We worked with multiple major manufacturers, including Unilever USA and Procter & Gamble, to increase their transparency about ingredients in personal care products.

Financials

United States Public Interest Research Group Inc
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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United States Public Interest Research Group Inc

Board of directors
as of 8/20/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Douglas Phelps

Janet Domenitz

Diane Brown

Brian Imus

Edmund Mierzwinski

Nic Riani

Emily Rusch

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/30/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian American/Pacific Islanders/Asian
Gender identity
Female

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data