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2CH news comments

Shift gambling focus to harm minimisation

#1085 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 14 June 2015

The NSW government recently approved a raft of changes to poker machine rules including an increase in the threshold below which poker machine winnings can be paid in cash from $2000 to $5000, and an increase in the amount of money players may store in an account or smartcard to $5000.

The President of the NSW Council of Churches, the Reverend Dr Ross Clifford, said while he welcomed the increase in the minimum period for problem gambler self-exclusion schemes from three to six months, it was hard to understand why pokies players would want $5000 on their account or smart card unless they intended to spend it for a win.

Dr Clifford said “If that is the case, the change means there is a higher likelihood that more people will lose more money playing the pokies, which may be good for the NSW government’s bottom line but not for those at risk of gambling addiction and their families.”

I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.

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