BGC Covid action plan delivers significant uplift in safer gambling messaging

3rd December 2020 9:51 am GMT

UK-licensed gambling operators have delivered a significant increase in safer gambling messaging and player interventions under the Covid action plan developed by the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC).

BGC chair Brigid Simmonds will set out the industry’s achievements in relation to the Covid action plan at today’s annual general meeting of the UK standards body.

She will show that the number of safer gambling messages on betting websites more than doubled since the launch of the BGC’s lockdown pledges, with the number of individual customers directly receiving safer gambling messages increasing by 150 per cent.

There has also been a 25 per cent increase in the number of direct interventions by operators where a player has been spending more time or money betting than they did before the pandemic.

“The Betting and Gaming Council was set up last year as a standards body committed to driving big changes across much of the regulated industry. These latest findings show that the BGC has led the way and is achieving real results on safer gambling,” said BGC chief executive Michael Dugher.

“The introduction of the ten-pledge plan at the start of lockdown was further evidence of success – and our members re-affirmed their support for the pledges when the second lockdown began.

“It shouldn’t be forgotten that around 30 million people in Britain place a bet at least once a year, whether that is on the National Lottery, in betting shops, casinos or at the bingo, and the overwhelming majority do so without any problems,” Dugher added.

“But although the Gambling Commission has found no evidence of an increase in problem gambling during lockdown, and the Government says rates of problem gambling are around 0.7 per cent and stable, we can and must do more to tackle it and protect vulnerable and at risk customers.

“That is why we are looking forward to the Government beginning its Gambling Review so we can further improve standards, whilst ensuring that customers are not driven into the arms of the offshore illegal black market where there are no standards or safeguards”.

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