Gambling | Australian Greens

Gambling

The Tasmanian Greens believe that all members of our community are entitled to protection from the social harm that results from problem gambling.

The Tasmanian Greens believe that all members of our community are entitled to protection from the social harm that results from problem gambling. Problem gambling can cause relationship breakdown and family violence, mental health issues and suicide, homelessness, social isolation, business failure, and an increase in crime rates.

Government has the responsibility to ensure that effective and adequate harm-minimisation measures are funded, implemented and monitored to prevent problem gambling.

Harm-minimisation underpins the Greens approach to problem gambling.

The prevalence of problem gambling associated with Electronic Gaming Machines (EGMs), or pokies, is directly related to the accessibility and particular characteristics of pokies. Pokies are a net drain on our economy and are concentrated in areas that have low socio-economic incomes and expenditure is significantly higher in these areas.

No government or state-owned business should profit from gambling revenue. Harm minimisation and regulation of the industry should be informed by regular, independent social and economic impact studies.

Measures

Independent Social and Economic Impact Studies

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. ensuring biennial, independent social and economic impact studies into the effects of gambling on the community are conducted, and for these studies to include clear recommendations which are tabled in parliament;

  2. removing the exemption from the mandatory code of practice for premium player programs;

  3. requiring an independent social and economic impact study into the effects of online gaming in Tasmania, particularly on young Tasmanians.

Poker Machines

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. immediately establishing $1 bet limits on all existing pokie machines;

  2. legislating for Tasmania to work towards being pokie-free;

  3. providing for local government control over the location and number of pokie venues.

New Gambling Products

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. subjecting all new or extended gambling licences and product proposals to an independent social and economic impact study which includes public consultation;

  2. requiring new applicants to demonstrate harm-minimisation controls on patrons.

Protection for Gambling Consumers

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. establishing the Gambling Consumers Advocate Office as an independent statutory body responsible for all matters relating to gambling consumer protection, reporting directly to Parliament on the effectiveness of, and conformity with, harm minimisation and patron care;

  2. providing adequate funding through the Community Support Levy (CSL) for agencies dealing with the effects of gambling on the community.

Tasmanian Gaming Commission

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. ensuring the Tasmanian Gaming Commission is maintained and enhanced to regulate the industry, and ensure independence with report requirements to the parliament;

  2. transferring responsibilities for consumer protection to the Advocate Office, with at least 50% of its membership representing agencies and community groups dealing with gambling problems.

Community Support Levy Foundation

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. applying the Community Support Levy (CSL) to casinos;

  2. establishing a Community Board, appointed by the Minister responsible for gambling harm minimisation, to recommend the distribution of the community support levy, with membership including service providers and community representatives whilst excluding persons employed or significantly associated with a licensed premises gaming operator, casino operator or gaming operator at any time within the preceding two years;

  3. ensuring the Community Board CSL fund distribution recommendations are reported annually to the Parliament.

Alternative Entertainment

The Tasmanian Greens will work towards:

  1. supporting initiatives from community groups and the private sector in areas of socio-economic disadvantage to develop alternative entertainment and recreational facilities.

The full policy is available for download below.