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Australian parliamentary committee launches online gambling inquiry

Australia’s House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs has launched an inquiry into online gambling and its impacts on people with gambling problems.

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The Committee is seeking written submissions from individuals and organisations providing recommendations relating to any or all of the inquiry terms of reference by 11 November 2022.

The Committee will examine several issues, such as: the effectiveness of existing consumer protections aimed at reducing online problem gambling; the effectiveness of current counselling; and support services to address online problem gambling along with the quality of and access to protective online gambling education programmes.

Also included in this list is the appropriateness of current gambling regulations in light of emerging technologies, payment options and products, and the effectiveness of protections against illegal online gambling services. This includes casino style gambling such as online blackjack and slot machines.

How to better target programmes to address online problem gambling to reduce the potential exploitation of at-risk people, and protect individuals, families and communities, among other issues, as well as the appropriateness of the definition of ‘gambling service’ in the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 will also be examined.

Chair of the Committee Peta Murphy MP commented: “The inquiry will be a fresh look at online gambling and whether current laws, regulations, consumer protections and education and support programmes are enough to reduce harm to gamblers.

“The Committee is concerned about the increasing reach of online gambling platforms into Australians’ lives, the exposure of children and young people to gambling advertising and how this may contribute to increases in problem gambling in the future.”

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