Gambling in Ireland has now become a more socially acceptable leisure activity with gambling facilities available online, in betting shops, at race tracks, in card clubs or gaming arcades or on Lotteries. For the majority of gamblers it remains an occasional social activity, but for a small percentage of the gambling population, they may find that it can escalate out of control.
While the vast majority of people who gamble do so for entertainment or fun, unfortunately, for some people it can become a serious problem or addiction. Some tips for ensuring your gambling remains fun include;
- Only gamble with what you can afford.
- Set limits and stick to them.
- Avoid chasing losses.
- Never allow gambling to interfere with your personal relationships.
- Don’t use gambling as a means of escape.
Responsible Gambling has been increasingly fundamental to the industry’s approach to customers and business. A number of safeguarding measures have been introduced and we continue to improve those measures in-line with International best practices. These measures include;
- Staff training and awareness to identify persons that may be affected by problem gambling.
- Prominent display and availability of relevant material relating to identifying problem gambling and the services and support that is available
- Reality checks, allow customers to set a session duration reminder. This reminder can help them to manage how long they are in a gaming session.
- Deposit limits, with the option to set personal daily, weekly or monthly deposit limits.
- Self-exclusion facilities, which will prevent customer from accessing gambling services in that premises.
- Introduction of a Safer Gambling Code, which introduces many new measures in relation to customer protection.
We have been advocating for and fully endorse the establishment of a regulatory body and its corresponding office to oversee our industry in Ireland. We look forward to the completion of the Gambling Regulation bill so that the Regulatory Authority of Ireland can commence its important work.
Support Services for people affected by problem gambling or gambling addiction
The Irish Bookmakers Association and its members, fully support the Gambling Awareness Trust, which is an Independent Charity that has been setup to fund education, awareness, research and treatment of problem gambling in Ireland: GamblingAwarenessTrust
Gambling Awareness Trust administers and funds the online resource GamblingCare.ie. This website offers support and information to those who are concerned about their own or another person’s gambling. By raising awareness of gambling-related harm they hope to help people make informed decisions about their gambling, understand and recognise problem gambling and know where to seek help. There are many support and problem gambling services available. These include phone counselling, face-to-face counselling sessions, out-reach programme’s and residential facilities. The supports are free of charge and there are little to no waiting times for most of them. Please visit GamblingCare.ie for further information on how to access these supports.
If you would like to speak to someone about your gambling, or if you are affected by someone else’s gambling problems, please call Freephone 1800 936 725 (Irl ), 08000 886 725 (NI )