The Victorian Greens have welcomed an indication by the Victorian Labor Government that it may ban gambling advertising at the Commonwealth Games in 2026.
During the budget estimates yesterday, in response to questioning from Greens’ Deputy Leader Ellen Sandell, Deputy Premier Jacinta Allan acknowledged that the community was sick of being bombarded with gambling ads during sport and said the Government would have “very little tolerance, indeed none, for that sort of advertising” during the Games.
The Greens say banning gambling advertising at the Games would help protect communities - particularly children and young people - from the risks of gambling harm.
Victorian Greens gambling harm reduction spokesperson, Katherine Copsey, said to date the Labor Government had done very little to tackle the prevalence of gambling advertising in Victoria, beyond banning ads near schools and at train stations.
She added that spending on gambling advertising in Victoria had increased by 320 per cent over the past decade, and that a ban at the Games would send an important message that the normalisation of sports betting was unacceptable.
The Greens also want to see the Government introduce more effective restrictions on gambling advertising in Victoria, by extending the ban to all public places, and introducing stricter rules on primetime gambling advertising like in South Australia.
Quotes attributable to Victorian Greens gambling harm reduction spokesperson, Katherine Copsey MLC:
“We know this predatory industry tries to normalise gambling through saturation advertising and associating itself with sport, and that children and young people are particularly vulnerable to these tactics.
“The Greens hope the Government will not only ban gambling advertising at the upcoming Commonwealth Games, but also consider a broader ban and restrictions, to protect Victorian communities and particularly children and young people from gambling harm.”
Quotes attributable to PAEC member and Deputy Leader Ellen Sandell MP:
“People are sick of seeing endless gambling ads during sport, so I’m pleased that the Government has responded to the Greens calls and suggested they may support a gambling ad ban at the Commonwealth Games - let’s hope they follow through with a commitment!”