To What Extent Does Democracy in the Uk Suffer from a Participation Crisis?

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To what extent does Democracy in the UK suffer from a Participation Crisis? Since the ending of WW2, political participation in the UK in many ways, seems to have undergone a great drop. This has caused a great deal of speculation as to whether or not democracy is even really carried out in the UK, as there are too few people participating for the system to be true democracy. Are the views of the majority of the population being expressed, or are they merely the views of the few that are bothered to vote? A participation crisis entails that the decline in levels of political participation threatens the legitimacy of the current democracy. If the levels are so low, questions may be asked as to whether the people are truly being properly represented by anyone. A key element in favour of there being a participation crisis is the decline in membership to political parties. Since 1951, memberships to political parties has been on a huge decline. The membership for the Tories has decreased from almost 3 million in 1951, to between 130 & 170 thousand in 2011. Liberal Democrat membership has also decreased from 145 000 in 1983 to 49 000 in 2011. This shows a great decline in those willing to take a particularly active role in being involved in politics. If there are a decreasing number of people becoming particularly interested in politics, then surely this decline may correlate with a general disinterest or lack of participation, throughout all parties. However, this data does not tell the whole story. Labour, while admittedly on a large decline from 1951 to 2011 (856 000 to 193 000), it has experienced a gain in 17 000 members since 2008. Furthermore, this data does not reflect the fairly recent rise in minor parties such as UKIP or Green Party, where many members of major parties have defected to, especially in recent years. This would account for the decline in
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