Anti-gambling Lords have secured a guarantee from the Ministry of Defence that all gambling machines will be removed from all military bases.
This was revealed by Lord Foster of Bath as the House of Lords continues its review of amendments that aim to update the Armed Forces Act of 2006, which will expire at the end of 2021. Last week, the House of Lords Select Committee backed an amendment by Alan Smith, the Lord Bishop of St Albans, to improve data on army personnel accessing treatment for alcohol, drug and gambling disorders in the Armed Forces Covenant annual report.
“I am concerned that the Ministry of Defence is not taking gambling-related harm in the military community sufficiently seriously,” the Lord Bishop commented. “On two occasions in response to my concerns in this area, the Ministry of Defence has stated that it has seen no evidence, or does not hold information, suggesting that serving personnel are more prone to problem gambling than any other group in society.”
Lord Foster of Bath added that he had secured a MoD guarantee that gambling machines would be removed from all bases, which he said is “a commitment which is yet to be completed.”