Sutcliffe warning over problem gambling

Gerry Sutcliffe MP, the Minister for Sport with responsibility for gambling, has warned that an increase in problem gambling arising for the relaxing of gambling laws would be unacceptable. With the introduction of the new Gambling Act 2005 this weekend, many observers fear a marked increase in problem gamblers.

As well as the government monitoring a report by the Gambling Commission on the prevalence of gambling, Sutcliffe also warned gambling companies, in an interview with the BBC, that their licences would be revoked if they stepped out of line.

The introduction of the new Gambling Act 2005, which is introduced this weekend on September 1, will see gambling laws relaxed, especially those relating to advertising, and is expected to bring with it a flurry of gambling companies eager to promote their brands.

However, GamCare, the gambling charity which helps problem gamblers, has condemned the government’s decision not to run any helpline numbers on gambling advertisements on television.

"Gambling advertising will produce more gamblers which will in turn produce more problem gamblers, despite protestations to the contrary," said GamCare chairman Anthony Jennens.

"GamCare wishes to express the sincere hope that Government will revise its policy on the Helpline number and that the ten years of hard work that have gone into the creation of the charity will not have been wasted."

Editor, - 2007-08-29 12:01:50

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