Harm minimisation in gambling? There’s little evidence it works

There’s a lack of evidence for Australia’s current approach to regulating program gambling, a new paper by ANZSOG says. Harm minimisation needs more research work.

There remains “for the most part only modest evidence” that harm minimisation techniques encouraging responsible gambling actually work, according to a new paper in the current edition of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government’s Evidence Base journal.

The strongest evidence is for measures imposed outside the control of venues, such as the removal of ATMs, smoking bans and reductions in betting limits, as well as self-exclusion.

And although there is a lack of decisive evidence that individual measures are effective, combining several may help reduce problem gambling, say authors Charles Livingstone, Angela Rintoul and Louise Francis.

This comes as Queensland is removing gambling regulation under the guise of “red tape reduction” and a recent decision by the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal to allow the installation of more pokies in Braybrook. They’re decisions the paper argues are “capable of making a big difference to the way gambling affects local communities”.

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  • michael

    And to add insult to the proven injury these parasitic machines do to our society Crown Casino is getting the Victorian parliament to include a $200 million compensation payment if any future Government does actually introduce something that is proven to be effective in reducing problem gambling such as pre commitments as proposed by the Productivity Com, not the lame watered down voluntary excuse that is being bought in by Victoria