Greens question Gambling Minister about YourPlay

Thursday, March 23, 2017 - 12:45pm to Monday, October 9, 2017 - 12:45pm
Speaker:
Colleen Hartland

My adjournment matter today is for the Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation. Pokies suck money out of poor communities, where the biggest net losses happen. They are designed to profit from people with problems, drawing a solid 35 per cent of their revenue directly from problem gamblers, yet it is not just the people with gambling problems who pay the price. With the average problem gambler losing $21 000 a year, often from far from impressive incomes, it is the children and families who are left to go without.

The Victorian government attempted to address this by introducing YourPlay in 2015, a voluntary precommitment scheme where pokies players can set limits and track time and losses. However, the scheme is voluntary and does not require players to stick to their limits, and preliminary results suggest the scheme is not working, with only a tiny percentage of pokies players activating YourPlay cards. The scheme is being evaluated by the South Australian Centre for Economic Studies. In 2016 at a Public Accounts and Estimates Committee hearing the then Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gambling and Liquor Regulation, Jane Garrett, said she was expecting to receive an interim report on YourPlay towards the end of 2016 and a final report in 2017. I ask the minister to make the interim report available to the public so the public can see if voluntary precommitment is really the solution to pokies preying on disadvantaged communities.