Grassroots backlash: Campaigners set agenda that politicians follow

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Frances Lawrence

Widow of Philip Lawrence

What they stand for

Nationwide campaign to end violence and promote civic values; ban on combat knives; raise status of police/teachers; encourage good citizenship in schools; emphasis on three Es - effort, earnestness and excellence. Government not to be neutral on family, and parents not to live separate lives from children.

What they say

`Each of us has the potential to be a force for good but...we need to rally the majority who have been silent for too long.'

; Ann Pearston

Snowdrop Petition

What they stand for Aims to ban all handguns from Britain, either to be kept at home or in clubs. The Government's proposed ban on all but .22 calibre handguns meets most of their demands and the group may decide to `wither away' once the legislation is passed.

What they say Organiser Jackie Walsh says: `We want to ban the ownership of all handguns in Britain.'

; Mairead Corrigan Maguire Peace People

What they stand for Formed in 1976 in Northern Ireland to build a `just and peaceful society for all'. Prompted initial euphoria leading to joint Nobel Peace Prize for Mairead Corrigan Maguire in the same year. Still works hard for peace but has self-evidently not delivered it in the Province.

What they say `We want to live and love and build a just and peaceful society.'

; Mary Whitehouse

National Viewers and

Listeners Association

What they stand for Established National Viewers and Listeners Association in 1965 to encourage viewers and listeners to react effectively to programme contents; and to safeguard against obscenity - including violence - and pornography in the media. Founder and Emeritus President Mrs Whitehouse still plays an active role.

What they say `We are campaigning for better standards in all broadcasting.'

; Cardinal Basil Hume

Catholic Bishops Conference

What they stand for The conference represents the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy in England and Wales. The aims of the social teaching document published yesterday include: the poor should not be a burden; wages need to be set by needs and not just the market; local is better than central decision making; support of the right to life and an end oppressive debt.

What they say `The deepening of the spiritual life must go hand with practical concern for our neighbours and with social action.'

; Tony Blair


What they stand for Tony Blair backs `civic society', `individual responsibility' and `stakeholder' economy; supports citizenship in curriculum; national strategy for education for parenthood; would enhance status of teachers, higher pay grades for wider experience, and general teaching council; big boost promised for youth training and work experience.

What they say `What excites me about the possibility of this debate is it puts right back firmly on the agenda the notion that there is such as thing as society.'

; John Major


What they stand for John Major is promoting "civic Conservatism". Law and order measures in Queen's Speech include ban on handguns over .22 calibre. Belief in "the family". Backs citizenship teaching in schools. Likely to back ban on combat knives - sale to under 16s already banned. Video licensing tightened. Green paper on young offenders to be published.

What they say `I am sure we should reduce the amount of violence on TV...But it is also the responsibility of the parents.'