The American Consumer Council's (ACC) was established in 1987. Its mission is to educate consumers on the purchase of safe, reliable products and services, to serve as a voice for consumer advocacy and economic wellness in the United States, to educate consumers in the area of financial literacy and to recognize companies for their environmental stewardship and corporate social responsibility.
ACC has over 127,000 members and oversees a network of 44 state and regional consumer councils across the United States. ACC is also the administrator of the Green C™ Certification program which certifies and recognizes deserving companies and organizations for their commitment to environmental compliance and corporate social responsibility. ACC is also affiliated with the International Consumer Council and a network of other national consumer councils around the world.
ACC’s origins began in 1985 with the formation of the California Consumer Council (http://www.calconsumercouncil.org). In 1987, ACC became a separate entity, and in 1992 ACC earned its own nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(C)(3) foundation status. ACC is registered as a nonprofit corporation in the State of California.
ACC fulfills its mission in three ways. First, ACC is a pro-active consumer education organization and focuses on encouraging consumers to purchase and use safe, reliable products/services. Secondly, ACC partners with several nonprofit credit unions across America to educate consumers on financial literacy and promote economic wellness for our members. ACC’s financial literacy program is consistently rated as one of the most popular financial literacy programs by educators and high school students. Thirdly, ACC supports a network of 44 state and regional consumer councils across the United States. Through our consumer councils, we champion local consumer issues and recognize deserving companies and organizations that offer outstanding products and services and strengthen their local communities through corporate support programs and volunteerism.
In cooperation with our network of more than 30 credit unions, ACC recruits members and encourages its members to make sound purchasing decisions that will benefit consumer-friendly companies and American-based businesses. We communicate with our members on a regular basis through our conferences, financial education training programs, and our two newsletters – Consumer News & Views and the Voice of the Consumer.
ACC is proud of its relationship with credit unions which are nonprofit, membership organizations that have a proven track record for community service and a strong commitment to their member-customers. Through credit unions, ACC has been able to reach hundreds of thousands of consumers and encourage them to become consumer advocates and environmental stewards.
ACC is also proud of its Corporate Sponsors which includes a number of outstanding companies and organizations ranging from Transamerica to the Consumer Reports publication. Each of these entities has met the test of providing outstanding products and/or services to America’s consumers.
ACC is not a consumer hotline, consumer-complaint bureau, or government regulatory organization. ACC has adopted a more proactive approach with companies and organizations that provide products/services to consumers. Our approach is to recognize and promote popular products/services based on consumer acceptance, reliability and a proven track record of performance. By encouraging consumers to support those companies that manufacture and sell safe, reliable products/services, ACC believes it can give these companies a competitive edge and, in turn, challenge their competitors to improve their performance and reliability standards. ACC believes that in the long-term this approach is more effective than lawsuits, complaints, and additional regulation.
How ACC Benefits American Consumers