- Protect our land and water from mining.
- Honesty and integrity in politics
- Local jobs
- People before profits
- Improved heath and education services.



Monday, 30 October 2017

NSW GOVERNMENT MUST ACT URGENTLY ON FINDINGS OF NEW GAMBLING HARM STUDY AND PROTECT PEOPLE FROM POKIES

The NSW Government has played politics with gambling harm in NSW by delaying the release of an important study that reported in 2015, making it public on the day national attention was focussed on the High Court citizenship ruling.

The Gambling Harm Minimisation research, commissioned by the Government and conducted by the University of Sydney Gambling Treatment Clinic, found:
*             poker machines are associated with the greatest levels of gambling harm;
*             evidence that gambling harms are not limited to 'problem' gamblers but extend to recreational gamblers;
*             new directions in harm minimisation are required to protect people; and
*             the need for a ban on controversial feature of poker machines known as "losses disguised as wins", where graphics and music indicate a win although a net loss of money has occurred.


Minister Paul Toole has also re-announced a new study into the prevalence of problem gambling and harms caused by excessive gambling, despite a key recommendation of the report being to shift away from measuring prevalence.

Greens MP and Gambling Harm spokesperson Justin Field said it was shameful that the NSW Government had known the significant findings of this report for years and failed to act.

"The recently released study, other research from Australia and overseas, the experience of people and communities affected by gambling and those who support them all point to the same thing -- pokies are harming our community and we need urgent action to fix it," he said.

"In the years since the NSW Government were first delivered this University of Sydney study, revenue from poker machines has risen by billions, and families have been left to deal with family breakdown, addiction and other harm.

"The Government knew this new study backed up what the brave gambling-impacted individuals, families and communities have been saying for years - the pokies are addictive, harmful and rigged in favour of the gambling industry.

"We don't need another study to tell us the same thing. The NSW Liberal/Nationals must act urgently to protect people and communities from gambling harm rather than protecting the vested interests of the industry.
"The Government must remove dangerous features of poker machines, introduce a dramatic reduction in machines and cap the losses that the community faces from these addictive machines," Mr Field said.

Gambling Harm Minimisation Report available here:
http://www.liquorandgaming.nsw.gov.au/Pages/gaming/problems-with-gambling/responsible-gambling-fund/gambling-research.aspx
30 October 2017

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