The UK’s Responsible Gambling Week is scheduled to run between November 7-13th this year– and will see more than 120,000 staff from an array of gambling venues, arcades, bingo halls, bookmakers and online websites gather to promote important messages surrounding responsible gaming.
Hosted by ERG and taking place at the Twickenham Rugby Stadium, the event is set to be the largest campaign yet. Not only will it invite thousands of industry leaders and casino operators to help promote safe gambling messages to the public, it will also be televised throughout various stadiums and sports matches across the UK too. Gaming developers and software companies like Scientific Gaming and Astra Games will also be in attendance.
Promoting An All-Year-Round Cause
The UK’s chief executive of the Gambling Commission Neil McArthur said that “The week’s strapline, ‘Let’s talk about safer gambling’, is an important message not only for customers but also for the staff and industry leaders whose role is to look out for their customers. It provides an opportunity for people across the gambling industry, no matter what their role is, to focus on what part they can play to make gambling safer and reduce gambling harms.”
In the lead up to November, operators will be able to make use of a new website that contains an information hub about the week, as well as all-year-around material that can be used to promote responsible gambling overall. The site has been developed in conjunction with the charity GamCare, who will provide training courses during the event. They also run courses at centres throughout London, Glasgow, Bath and Sunderland.
The Ethical Debate Over Loot Boxes
A hot topic likely to crop up during the event is the UK’s on-going conundrum with loot boxes. The government are in the process of determining if loot boxes should be banned altogether, as concerns continue to grow over the number of children spending money on virtual goods in online games.
The Children’s Commission has proposed that age restrictions and parental controls be enforced in these games going forward. In addition, schools are now looking to deliver “digital citizenship” lessons to young people in a bid to push the message further. Even though countries like Belgium and the Netherlands have already taken a strict stance on skin gambling and loot boxes, the UK government are still revising whether these issues will now come under regulation of the UK Gambling Act.
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