Tackling Gambling Harm
in Australia symposium
On Monday 1 May, The Alliance partnered with the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) for the symposium “Social justice meets public health: tackling gambling harm in Australia”.
This was a pre-conference event of the PHAA Preventative Health Conference and held at the Adelaide Convention Centre as well as virtually.
Rose O'Leary, Carol Bennett from the Alliance met with Connie Bonaros MLC
The event was well-attended by Federal politicians, researchers, lived experience advocates, local government representatives, community health organisations and more which truly highlighted how much interest in the issue is growing and how it is beginning to be recognised as a crucial public health issue.
The key takeaways from the conference were:
Lived experience needs to be front and centre when it comes to legislative changes to ensure any changes will have the greatest impact on reducing harm
Acceptance that, like other harmful products, gambling should be properly regulated
The need for a national health response to gambling harm (including prevention, treatment and research) crucial with a call for the Federal Government to create a unit within the Department of Health and Aged Care to address gambling harm and to establish a new, properly resourced national regulator and ombudsman
The need for gambling industry donations and lobby interests to be curbed to protect the integrity of governments to act in the public interest
Now is the time to implement a mandatory pre-commitment scheme for both online gambling services and poker machines with binding and practical default limits which can only be increased with proof of income.
The symposium generated significant media interest as the first national forum on gambling harm. Following the symposium, Alliance for Gambling Reform CEO Carol Bennett and Policy and Advocacy Lead Rose O’Leary met with Connie Bonaros MLC to discuss local gambling harm issues in South Australia.
See our communique here
See our media release here