Conservative MP Richard Graham has called upon the Government to implement a new gambling levy which he hopes would “speed up work on both prevention and cure.”
Ahead of the release of the UK Gambling Commission’s (UKGC) National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms, Graham has urged the Government to report on whether or not a new levy would be possible.
The MP for Gloucester explained: “The Gambling Commission is soon to launch their National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms. Meanwhile, I have a Ten-Minute Rule Bill coming soon, urging the government to report on the possibility of a levy.
“If actioned, it would be an important step to improve our understanding of a problem much greater than most recognise. Regulators cannot do it all alone.
“Parliament and government should take the first step of a new gambling levy to speed up work on both prevention and cure. This problem is not going to disappear magically, and we need action now.”
Setting out five recommendations, Graham has addressed that implementing a levy could be used as a way to fund additional research into problem gambling and solutions to the issue. He added: “A levy could therefore generate significant revenue to fund a major independent research initiative, and more gambling clinics, like the new one in London and soon Leeds.”
Alongside the development of safer gambling initiatives, Graham has suggested that operators must collaborate with the UKGC to strengthen policies that are already in place. This includes: stronger gambling advertising regulations and self-exclusion schemes must be introduced in order to protect a greater amount of people.
He added: “We must embrace technology to protect more people. Using software like Gamban for blocking gambling sites can help with self-exclusion. It should be mandatory for all gambling companies to have such systems. There are other tools which could be developed to help protect the young like facial recognition to block underage gambling more effectively.”