Larger and more legible fonts, as well as a single nationwide phone number for at-risk gamblers to call, form the basis of new proposals by the American Gaming Association.
The leading lobbying group in the US gambling industry has called for the improvement of practices in the country to promote responsible gambling.
The American Gaming Association (AGA) last week released a series of draft proposals to improve the state of responsible gambling in the country. All these practices and recommendations have been tailored to help players who suspect they may have a gambling problem.
One of the first things that the AGA pointed out is that the fine print in gambling ads that calls for responsible gambling is too small and often too blurry, so their first recommendation is that gambling companies should be required to enlarge font sizes.
Also, many operators have different numbers and resources listed in their respective responsible gambling sections, so the AGA have proposed introducing a single number for the entire country. That way, according to the AGA, at-risk individuals will receive better treatment.
Jessica Feil, AGA Vice President of Government Relations and Gaming Policy Counsel, stated that problem gambling helplines were vital for anyone seeking help with their gambling addiction. She added that many states had different state-specific helplines that were another obstacle to actually getting a helping hand. Feil concluded that critical resources should be easily accessible to everyone who needs them. By making a national helpline and introducing it in advertisements was the best way to do that.
At the moment, there’s no standard helpline in the US that would assist problem gamblers. If you search for such a number online, the most common result will be 1-800-GAMBLER. This number is only available in a few states, including Illinois, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. Many other states have different numbers suggested by their respective operators.
Promoting responsible gambling is clearly a vital feature of any casino advertising, and the AGA is making concrete steps to show regulators that it take its job seriously. Introducing a national helpline might be just a start, but it’s an important move as it makes it possible for anyone to call and get help with their gambling problem right away. The AGA believes that the call-in helpline is still a much better option at the moment than using other more sophisticated services, such as live chat, phone messaging, and email.
According to some statistics, a total of 2.6% of all adult US residents has some kind of gambling issue, which is around ten million people. Although most of these have a mild problem, it still cannot be neglected. The US gambling industry wants to avoid the criticisms from regulators experienced by UK and European operators. Actions like this recent one by the AGA shows it wants to get ahead of the curve, investing millions of dollars annually to promote responsible gambling, update various related policies, develop self-exclusion programs, and more.