National register for gambling addicts wanting to ban themselves gets full support of Centre Alliance and SA-BEST

30 November 2018

Centre Alliance and SA-BEST today threw their full support behind the establishment of a national register that will allow people trying to quit gambling to ban themselves from all betting sites – including phone apps.

The Federal Government today announced a range of tough new industry measures to tackle the increasing impact of gambling addiction - including online gambling – across the country.

The new standards are designed to confront the burgeoning growth of online sports-betting in Australia – the country’s fastest-growing form of gambling.

“Any sensible solution that tackles head-on the horrific scourge of gambling will always get our support,” Centre Alliance Senator, Stirling Griff, said today.

“Anyone who knows a gambling addict – whether that be a family member, friend or work colleague - knows only too well the terrible curse that addiction has on the lives of the individual themselves and also their loved ones.

“Online gambling is one of the worst forms of gambling as it is literally at a person’s finger tips, wherever they are.

“For a problem gambler to be able to ban themselves from placing any form on online bet anywhere in the country is a step in the right direction.”

SA-BEST MLC and gambling spokesperson, Connie Bonaros, said: “All parties involved in developing and implementing these important new standards should be applauded.

“The horrific and life-altering impacts of gambling addiction has been well documented, and tragically, the problem continues to worsen,” she said.

“The South Australia Government recently approved the Independent Gambling Authority’s recommendation to allow online betting on a new range of minor SA sports including Gaelic football, beach volleyball and snooker -  a decision that beggars belief.

“There are already too may sports that people can bet on – what possible reason can anyone give for opening up more sports to gambling, except to further line the pockets of betting agents and bookmakers.

“On the back of that, it’s been revealed the IGA failed dismally in its obligation to protect problem gamblers by deciding to revoke the barring orders of 642 gambling addicts simply because the Authority couldn’t contact them.

“Many addicts are devoid of the ability to help themselves and need the intervention of authorities. Other gambling addicts expressly reach out to gaming venues to get the venues to ban them – or to help the individual fight their gambling addictions.

“That lack of action by the Authority is virtually throwing desperate gambling addicts to the wolves.

“The SA Government needs to take a leaf out of the Federal Government’s book and stop trivialising what is an extremely serious problem that impacts the entire community.

“A national register that will allow people trying to quit gambling to ban themselves from all betting sites – including phone apps – is a great initiative.

“SA-BEST and Centre Alliance will keep a watchful eye on its implementation to ensure it is effective in helping confront the plague that is online gambling addiction.”

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