Industry Unites for Safer Gambling Week
Safer Gambling Week takes place from 1st – 7th November. It’s a campaign that sees the gambling industry having the aim of creating a conversation about safer gambling with their customers, staff and the wider public.
The seven days will see awareness being made of :
- The tools available to help people gamble safely throughout the year
- How to gamble more safely
- Where to go to receive more advice and support.
It’s not just the betting shops that are part of Safer Gambling Week. The campaign is also supported by amusement arcades, casinos, online gambling sites and bingo clubs. The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC), Bingo Association and bacta (the amusement machine trade association) are all working together to champion higher standards.
The first Safer Gambling Week took place four years ago. The week will see a great number of online and land-based venues giving information and helping to produce a nationwide conversation about how best to gamble safely.
About The Safer Gambling Week
The 2021 Safer Gambling Week will find it easier to put their important message across. Last year saw the event take place at a time when many betting shops, amusement arcades and bingo clubs were closed due to lockdown.
It was still hugely successful online with 19 million social media impressions last year. This was up 19% on the previous year and the 2020 figure had seen an 18% increase on the previous year. More good news is that operators have seen the number of safer gambling tools being used rising. This includes self-exclusion and deposit limits. This is more evidence that Safer Gambling Week (which was launched in 2017) is affecting the way that people gamble in a positive manner.
As with most events that are held over a week, it is necessary to look at the long-term. It must be stressed that regulated betting and gaming operators put in a great deal of work all year round to promote safer gambling. Online sites have special sections dedicated to responsible gambling with links to support organisations.
The chief executive of the BGC is Michael Dugher. Speaking about the week ahead, he said: “As the standards body representing the regulated betting and gaming industry, the BGC is delighted to support Safer Gambling Week 2021.” He is sure that this year’s event will be “even better” than that held last year.
Mr Dugher added that BGC members had been giving increased funding towards research, education, and treatment. He also mentioned the whistle-to-whistle ban on TV betting commercials during live sport, as well as strict ID and age verification checks.
The number of safer gambling messages on betting sites has more than doubled during the pandemic. There has also been a 25% increase in direct interventions towards those customers spending more time and money betting before the pandemic. He believes that Safer Gambling Week will give his members “a great opportunity to highlight this fantastic work.”
One key aim is to emphasise the difference between those who are regulated and the “unlicensed and illegal online black market,” where there are no safeguards in place.
Also talking about Safer Gambling Week has been Miles Baron, who is the chief executive of The Bingo Association. His view is that Safer Gambling Week is “an important part of the bingo industry’s commitment to social responsibility.” He sees the week as a good opportunity in “highlighting activity and support that is available throughout the year.” Mr Baron stressed the importance of clubs up and down the country promoting safer gambling and engaging directly with their customers.
That is a view shared by John White, who is the chief executive of bacta. He believes that Safer Gambling Week “allows the industry to showcase its year-long commitment” to the problem. It also allows customers to find out more about “the tools that are available to them if they in anyway feel their gambling becoming problematic.”
The Betting and Gaming Council are clearly working hard to ensure the industry has world class standards. They want to ensure that there is “an enjoyable, fair and safe betting and gaming experience for all our customers.”
Time To Think Campaign
Recently, they launched the Time To Think campaign, aimed at encouraging the setting of deposit limits and use of other tools. The two links below tell you more about this campaign and how important Safer Gambling Week is
The Betting and Gaming Council : https://bettingandgamingcouncil.com/
Gamble Aware : https://about.gambleaware.org/
Gamcare : https://www.gamcare.org.uk
The Safer Gambling Website : https://safergamblinguk.org/
The Safer Gambling Week facebook Page : https://www.facebook.com/SGWeek21
The Safer Gambling Week Twitter Page : https://twitter.com/SGWeek21
The Safer Gambling Week Instagram Page : https://www.instagram.com/sgweek21/
The BACTA Website : https://bacta.org.uk/
The Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust Website : https://www.ygam.org/
Telephone Numbers :
The National Gambling Helpline is 0808 8020 133.