SNP pushes for gambling modifications as part of wider digital rethink

Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Nicola Sturgeon has called for a radical rethink on British society’s digital engagements and identity, which would impact the governance of UK gambling.

Presenting SNP’s ‘Stronger for Scotland’ 2019 General Election manifesto, Sturgeon underlined that SNP would continue to push for the UK government to treat problem gambling as a public health matter.

Despite supporting a ‘joined-up strategy’ on reducing problem gambling harms, Sturgeon has remarked that SNP seeks ‘greater devolution on gambling regulations’ attributed to the Scottish Parliament.

Of the political parties campaigning in the UK election, the SNP provides the greatest detail on gambling modifications it seeks to pursue.

Key pledges include a backing a new public health inquiry into gambling-related harms and changes to ‘charity lottery laws reducing bureaucracy and maximising returns to good causes’.

Mirroring the Conservative government, the SNP supports tougher measures preventing minors from engaging with gambling verticals and tougher laws of gaming Loot Boxes.

As a wider social pledge, the SNP states that it would support the foundation of a new ‘online regulator’ monitoring digital standards, ‘with the ability to take action such as imposing heavy fines and blocking access to sites’ protecting younger audiences.

Enforcing a stronger UK digital code, the SNP states that it would instruct the UK government to provide free and up-to-date expert resources to help protect people and support learning about online harm and abusive behaviour.

Central to its mandate, the SNP calls for a ‘levy on technology companies’ to fund its regulator and further resources attached to funding public awareness campaigns.

To date, all manifestos published by UK parties, indicate that a review of the 2005 Gambling Act will be undertaken, regardless of the outcome of the UK General Election on 12 December, as further scrutiny of the UK gambling sector awaits industry incumbents.

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