The Study Finds Australians Do Not Use Gambling Damage Mitigation Tools

July 26, 2021 John Isaac

The research finds that generally, gambling harm reduction tools simply don’t effective because users do not use them. Although, these tools are designed to give people the ability to set deposit limits or opt-out of services that could lead to problem betting behavior.

Casino Tools Over the Map of Australia Coloured as Their Flag The study was conducted on 40000 Australian bettors by the University of Sydney Gambling Treatment and Research Clinic (GTRC). The study finds that the government’s decision to enforce a self-exclusion policy has a significant impact on online betting behavior.

The research also found that if online bettors did not have to utilize these tools to decrease the damage associated with gambling, they did not use these opportunities. Research Results Published in Psychology of Addictive Behaviors.

A survey conducted on some of Australia’s leading betting sites identifies that 6000 users used this tool to those limits for a year. Every fourth player asked to make the gambling limit less strict, and every eighth player asked to remove the limit.

The research author Sally Gainsbury said this is essential to the success of self-exclusion and restricting gambling policies. Gainsbury also says that the same opt-out policies can be used to reward other policies that promote safer and more responsible gaming.

Self-Exclusion Programs and Gambling Limits Are Still the Most Commonly Used Measures to Minimize Game Damage

According to Robert Heirene, a policy introduced in May 2019 requiring betting sites to set a limit on the amount of gambling for their customers has had a significant impact on customer protection. Dr. Heirene said that in addition to the new government policy on self-exclusion or deposit limits, the use of deposit limits has increased.

Sally Gainsbury also stated that the number of users setting monthly deposit limits increased after the Australian government officially launched the self-exclusion program. The number of users who used the system increased by almost 5,000%, from 4 to 187 on a single website, demonstrating the effectiveness of self-exclusion options, being inexpensive and simple.

More Study Information

For the 2018-2019 fiscal year, Gambling Treatment and Research Clinic analyzed 39,853 user accounts from 6 sports betting and racing sites in Australia.

The study explains that 83% did not use any of the Gambling Harm-Reduction Tools such as deactivation / self-exclusion of accounts, deposit limits, and timeout. Almost every tool user used deposit limits. Half of the deposit limits users did not change their limit after setting it, and 766 users (every eighth) made from one to three changes, while 32 users made at least 15 changes.

Heirene also added that the number of users setting the deposit limit for betting raised since the launch of the self-exclusion system. She noted that the outcome could prompt the government to take additional steps to encourage safer betting.

In June, the NSW Agency introduced “the Number That Changed Life” operation to address the harm caused by gambling. It targets Chinese, Korean, Arabic, Vietnamese, and Hindi communities. The strategy was made after a February 2019 poll found that one in two adults in New South Wales gambled.

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