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Why should people participate?

- It exercises our rule of democracy
- Gives you a voice


How can people participate?

- Voting in elections
- Joining pressure groups
- Joining political parties


Give some evidence that people do participate:

- Pressure groups such as Friends of the earth encourage s its members to support a political party that endorses their views e.g Green party.

- Pressure group membership is on the rise - the National Trust for example has 4.5 million members.

- Many people are actively involved online. For example, many people engage with popular petition sites like For example, over 1.8 million signed a petition on calling for Trump to be prevented making a state visit to the UK. It ended up getting debated in Parliament.


Give some evidence for lack of participation:

- Electoral turnout has declined since 1992. In 1992, 77.7% voted but in the 2017 election the turnout has fallen to 68.7%.

- Party membership is declining too. In 1980, 4.12% of the public were members of political parties; today it has fallen to just above 1%.


Judgement: What should we do about it?

- The UK is currently suffering from a 'political participation crisis' where the public are becoming increasingly disengaged with UK politics.

- Option 1 - Make voting mandatory in the UK

- In Australia, voting in elections is mandatory, and in the 2013 federal election, there was turnout of 93.45%, compared to the 2017 UK election turnout of 68.7%.