The government have finally stood up and capped fixed odd betting terminals. However, this is all too late for the 350,000 addicted gamblers.
Gambling or betting can come in many forms, whether it’s putting £10 on your accumulator or spending a night down the casino.
To many, gambling is seen as a bit of fun, but to others it is a way of life and can take over their lives.
Now the government have announced that the maximum stakes on fixed odd betting machines are being cut to £2 in a bid to tackle the problem.
The current system allows people to bet £100 every 20 seconds. A Canterbury councillor also said that they are more addictive than cocaine.
However, this is all a little too late and there are other problems that should be dealt with to combat gambling addiction.
Statistics from the BBC reveal that fixed odds machines have seen a sharp rise in use. While ‘over the counter’ betting had seen a slump.
There has also been a huge rise in profits made by companies who deal in gambling. With betting appealing to a younger generation.
The government last year discussed plans of a day time and social media advertising ban, but this amounted to nothing.
This is the real problem especially affecting a younger generation who mainly enjoy sports betting and visiting casinos.
The Guardian reported that gambler Sulayman Keita lost all his money through the terminals.
He said: “What can I say? I’ve lost all my money and it is money that I will never get back”
It is extremely hard and rare to sit through a football match and not see a gambling advert.
Even before the game starts and Martin Tyler shouts “And it’s LIVE” Ray Winston pops on your screen and tells you to put £5 on the first goal scorer.
It is also extremely easy to place a bet on your mobile phone within seconds thanks to “in play odds.”
Gambling is as big a problem as drug addiction and alcoholism, but it is seen as more socially acceptable. According to the charity Action on Addiction, one in three people are addicted to something.
The problem of gambling is not being solved the government have made steps with the new cap, however there are still massive hurdles to overcome.
According to gamblingaddiction.org 350,000 people suffer with addiction with only 5% seeking help and 1% getting treatment.
These shocking numbers should make the government act and change other policies to curb the addiction crisis.
Advertising should be next as this is what is making youngsters addicted and therefore they are chasing their losses.
As well the companies should be held to account and work with the government to have an experience that is far for all.
Until then more people will add to the 350,000 classed as “problem gamblers.”