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Safer Gambling Week: Youth Must Be Protected From Gambling-Related Harm

This year's Safer Gambling Week emphasizes the need to protect the people, especially the youth, from the harms associated with gambling.

Even the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic could do so little to stop the UK Betting and Gambling Week from holding the Safer Gambling Week campaign this year.

Now in its second year and running from Nov. 19-25, the Safer Gambling Week seeks to further strengthen its call for the industry, the government, and regulators to protect the people, especially the youth, from the dangers associated with gambling.

To that effect, Michael Dugher, CEO of the UK Betting and Gaming Council, stresses the significance of safer gambling and calls for positive attitude toward practicing safer gambling all-year long:

“Safer Gambling Week is incredibly important, but safer gambling should not be seen by anyone as simply something we support for one week of the year – it is a commitment for every week of the year. Since being set up a year ago, the BGC has been at the forefront of efforts to drive up standards within our industry.”

The Safer Gambling Week campaign, which is also under the initiatives of Bingo Association and the British Amusement Catering Trade Association, is supported by over 200 organizations. 

The Ascot Racecourse, for instance, renamed its opening race last Friday to the campaign, while the English Football League clubs during the weekend matches featured the Safer Gambling Week branding.

One of the organizations actively pushing for a safer gambling environment is the Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM), a charity founded by people with lived experience and dedicated to providing free education to protect the youth from gambling-related dangers.

Other than delivering accessible education about gambling-related harm, the YGAM team’s efforts toward safer gambling extends to their partnership with Football Index and National Union for Students (NUS).

Besides the YGAM’s efforts, the Betting and Gambling Council continues to push for a fair, safe, and enjoyable betting and gaming experience, according to Birigd Simmonds, Chair of the Betting and Gaming Council.

Simmonds said:

“We bring together remote gambling, the betting shops, casinos, and the bingo industry. All our members are absolutely committed to this. They have safer gambling at the heart of everything they do.”

She also stressed how they have taken actions to address gambling advertising, as well as ensuring persons under 25 cannot engage in gambling activities.

Meanwhile, the recent news of some countries adding limitations to gambling during the lockdowns reflect the authorities’ efforts to prevent gambling-related harm. 

While the Safer Gambling Week campaign mainly covers land-based gambling, the same call for a safer and healthier gambling environment and experience should be observed in the iGaming industry, especially in fiat and Bitcoin casino and sportsbooks.

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