Impact on society a concern
Ireland‘s president, Michael D Higgins, said in a media interview over the weekend that he would like to see the introduction of tighter laws on gambling advertising, along with more protection for vulnerable players and the integrity of games.
In an interview on RTÉ Radio 1’s Sunday Sport, the president said the current negativity around gambling is a real concern, especially the impact on society of problem gambling.
“If I had my way, I wouldn’t have advertising of any access to gambling platforms in sport at all. I really worry when I read the (problem gambling) cases,” he said. “I think in a way we should protect our sports of keeping them free from this kind of stuff.”
The president said that education at an early age can help, but will not totally solve the growing issue.
“I just think [sport] should be protected from it. There is no one being heavy about it. What you can do is through education obviously, through the school systems. As well as that, we do need, and it’s not for me as President as I’m no influence except to say what I think, is that the integrity of sport means having care for everyone who participates.
“Having care for everyone who participates means not exposing them when in fact they are vulnerable. How you deal with vulnerabilities is by preparing them of course. For too long in Ireland we often ignore problems that are staring us in the face,” he concluded.