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Land-BasedLegal & Regulatory

Sydney council requests slots machines freeze

Sydn

sydney
ey’s Fairfield council has called on the New South Wales (NWS) government to freeze the number of slot machines (or pokies) in the area, after news emerged that A$8bn was spent on these in the 2015/16 financial year.

It says the state government regulator, the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority, should consider capping slot machine numbers in all “vulnerable” communities due to the high risk of gambling-related harm to residents.

"No public good can be achieved within communities with high levels of gambling, such as Fairfield, for any further development of the gaming industry or any additional increases in gaming revenue," says the submission, obtained by Fairfax Media.

Fairfield is ranked as one of the most disadvantaged areas in Sydney. The submission notes that 18 pubs and 20 clubs operate 3836 poker machines in the Fairfield council area.

Greens MP, Justin Field, said in a statement: “NSW has allowed de facto casinos in our local communities that are ripping billions of dollars from local people and taking a toll on families and individuals.

“The government must now play its part and give pokies-impacted communities like Fairfield support for a freeze and then reduction in machine numbers.”

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