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GambleAware calling for compulsory levy on gambling turnover

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GambleAware is pushing for a compulsory 1% levy on Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) in a new call for gambling reform. This is coming after the economic hardship brought by the COVID pandemic. The United Kingdom has seen an increase in gambling activity, and GambleAware claims there is “a potential increased risk of people experiencing gambling harms”.

In a bid to protect the UK’s gambling population that will be at risk and would need gambling-related assistance, GambleAware has published six principles that represent its change plan.

Key on the agenda is the levy, which the charity organisation says should serve as a condition before licensing.

It stated: “The gambling industry should take the necessary and responsible steps in response to rising financial and economic hardship across the country by committing at least 1% of GGY to treatment, prevention and research – raising £140m (US$175m) annually.”

While many gambling companies already contribute voluntarily to these causes, GambleAware believes a compulsory levy would “provide stability and the best-in-class solutions to prevent gambling harms”, adding that “such a funding model would enable better longer-term planning and commissioning for services”.

“The ongoing impact of the pandemic, a growing cost-of-living crisis and shift to online gambling means there is a potential increased risk of people experiencing gambling harms that remains unseen until an individual reaches a crisis point,” said Zoë Osmond, GambleAware’s CEO.

“Without action now, many more people and families could suffer. That’s why we are calling on the Government to introduce a mandatory, 1% levy of GGY on the gambling industry as a condition of licence.”

Alongside a compulsory 1% levy, GambleAware set out five other principles. These include:

  • Support for deprived communities that are more exposed to gambling harm
  • Support for those most at risk by reducing inequalities Deploying local prevention and treatment services
  • Targeted, innovation-driven support
  • Coalition of stakeholders to ensure total compliance between all parties involved
  • All gambling investments should be scrutinised through health, environmental, social and governance lens

The organisation is committed to improving the lives of those that have developed any harm, physically, emotionally and mentally, as a result of gambling exposure.

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