A report commissioned by GambleAware states that the cost of mental health and counselling services related to gambling addiction cost between £30m and £110m per year.
The report, which was published by independent think-tank, IPPR, on 13 December, examines the cost of programmes such as counselling and addiction treatment for up to 620,000 problem gamblers, and the impact of FOBTs.
Over the last year there have been many attempts within the coin-op industry to promote responsible gambling, including the nationwide self-exclusion schemes implemented by the bingo and arcade industries.
Looking ahead for coin-op, at the recent Bacta convention, incoming president, Gabi Stergides, announced that his Social Responsibility Committee has established a programme of communications initiatives exploring how it can establish a universal responsible gaming message.
We recognise that social responsibility is a continuous process and this committee is responsible for driving it forward.
Stergides said: “We need to demonstrate and showcase the good practice we undertake in social responsibility matters and continue to look to lead in the field in this respect.
“We recognise that social responsibility is a continuous process and this committee is responsible for driving it forward and demonstrating that it is at the heart of everything we, as Bacta members, do.”
Responsible gaming was a key issue at the Bacta convention, and the industry’s commitment to protecting vulnerable gamblers was commended.