September marks Responsible Gambling Education Month, an initiative launched by the American Gaming Association in the hopes of improving the state of the gambling industry for everyone for all Americans. But not all jurisdictions are doing enough. Beyond the Atlantic Ocean, the island of Jersey is finding it hard to muster the funding necessary to tackle problem gambling.
More must be done in order to protect consumers as Jersey Gambling Commission, which regulates gambling in the jurisdiction, is left to fend for itself with insufficient going to the people who develop problem gambling or experience gambling-related harm in other forms, reports the BBC.
This, says advocate Cyril Whelan is "depressing," and the matter is worse when you consider the fact that gambling does cost lives. Whelan outlined his findings as part of an annual report that is looking into the work of the Jersey Gambling Commission.
But the lack of support for those suffering from problem gambling is not necessarily new, adds Whelan. It has been a continuing trend with the past 12 month as well, with little progress done to address this underlying problem when it comes to treating vulnerable consumers on the island.
On the plus side, Whelan was encouraged by the fact that communication between the government and the commission had improved over the past year. To help roll out treatment facilities and initiatives, however, there would need to be sufficient funding. Deputy Economic Development Minister Kristen Morel agreed that gambling addiction needed addressing and acknowledged that it can put families and consumers through hardship.
"Once we understand the scale, we can design services appropriate to that scale," Morel added. Even though the matter with problem gambling in Jersey has remained static, there has been some progress, particularly insofar as overseas network of advisors and service providers have been involved, Jersey Gambling Commission chief executive Dr Jason Lane said
Gordon Moody’s gamblingtherapy.org/je has offered continued support and advice to people from the jurisdiction. The organization has been working actively to raise awareness for the issue of problem gambling in Jersey as well as its de-stigmatization. At least one consumer from Jersey has used Gordon Moody’s help service as a result, the report noted.
While funding may seem a little pressed at the moment, Lane has assured us that tackling problem gambling remains part of the Commission’s Social Responsibility program as the watchdog carries to muster the numbers and help address the problem head-on using exact data.
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