New survey on problem gambling


RIP Brian
Feb 22, 2001

Industry and politicians alike look forward to latest Gambling Commission study.

A "Gambling Prevalence" study commissioned 2 years ago by the UK Gambling Commission and conducted by the National Centre for Social Research in collaboration with Birmingham University academics is due for publication in two week's time, and will be the centre of lively debate and comment.

Reporting on the survey, which focused on problem gamblers, over the weekend The Telegraph newspaper seems to have accessed a leak from the organisers, for it claims that the new research "...has found a massive increase in 'problem gambling' in just eight years."

The newspaper reports that the study is understood to have found that the number of gambling addicts has more than doubled to up to 2 percent of the adult UK population, and may colour attitudes towards more casinos in Britain.

The study has been the subject of peer-review over the UK summer and is due for presentation in the middle of this [September] month. The Telegraph claims that industry experts anticipate that it will show at the very least a doubling in the problem-gambling prevalence rate.

This compares with a previous study by the old Gaming Board in 1999, which found that problem gambers made up between 0.6 and 0.8 percent of the adult population.

Industry analysts say the problem has come from an increase in online gambling sites and a big increase in the number of touch-screen roulette games where punters can wager up to GBP 300 a minute.

An unidentified source, presumably within government is quoted by The Telegraph as saying: “The suspicion is that [prime minister] Brown will use the prevalence study as a way to restate future opposition to new casino development. Ministers have been told that the casinos plank of the Gambling Act will be severely career limiting.”

Official spokesmen for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport told the newspaper: “We are not going to speculate. The study looks at problem gambling levels before the Act comes in, so [it] is a baseline. There will be a further study in three years. The Act gives the Gambling Commission powers to deal with any problem that might arise. Ministers have always been clear we won't hesitate to use these powers if we have to.”

On the subject of land casinos, The Telegraph reports that at least a quarter of local authorities which are expected to license the new casinos now do not want to go ahead.

Earlier this year Culture Secretary James Purnell wrote to the local authorities asking if they still wanted to proceed with the plans after Parliament threw them out. It is understood that at least four said that they do not want to go ahead, either for ideological reasons or because the councils’ leadership changed hands in May’s local elections.

The Culture Department spokesman added: “We have extended the deadline for the 16 local authorities to respond to us following requests from some authorities who wanted more time to consult with stakeholders over the summer period.

“We will be considering all responses carefully before making any further announcements. In the meantime we will not give a running commentary or speculate.”

From tomorrow, betting shops will be able to open from 7am to 10pm all year round instead of just in summer and gambling operators, like casinos, will be able to advertise on TV for the first time.

The newspaper goes on to cover largely negative comments from religious and problem gambling experts on the new gambling dispensation starting in Britain today [September 1st]

Opposition parties also gave voice to their fears. Don Foster MP, the Liberal Democrats’ culture spokesman, said: “There has been a huge surge in online gambling but ministers have failed at every opportunity to bring Internet gambling companies onshore where they would pay tax and be properly regulated.” Foster was also interviewed on Sky News television broadcasts throughout the day, urging all gambling operators and advertisers to carry problem gambling help numbers.


Ueber Meister Mouse
Sep 12, 2004
Link Removed ( Old/Invalid)

LONDON, Sept 7 (Reuters) - Britain's Gambling Commission will publish its study of problem gambling in the UK on Sept. 19, it told Reuters on Friday.

"The report will be published on Wednesday 19," a Gambling Commission spokesman said, confirming what industry sources had earlier told Reuters.

"There will be a presentation to industry bodies on the Tuesday evening before ....

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