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JENNY GILRUTH MSP DEMANDS TOUGHER UK GOVERNMENT ACTION ON FOBTS

Publised date : 31 Aug 2017

OVER £63M LOST ON GAMBILING MACHINES IN FIFE SINCE 2008

Jenny Gilruth, MSP for Mid Fife & Glenrothes, has called on the UK government to take tougher action to tackle the scourge of Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) in our local communities – after figures from the Campaign for Fairer Gambling revealed that over £63million had been lost on the gambling machines since 2008 across Fife.

Over £1 billion has been lost on the machines, known as the ‘crack cocaine of gambling’, since 2008 across Scotland – with over £9million lost in Fife in 2015/16 alone.

The figures have led to calls from Jenny Gilruth MSP for the UK government to take action to tackle FOBTs, which remains reserved to Westminster – including by reducing the numbers allowed in betting shops, limiting the stakes that can be bet, reducing the time that can be spent on the machines, and also taking action to ban the machines altogether if people continue to lose out.

Commenting, Jenny Gilruth MSP said:

“These are incredibly concerning figures – and show that the Tory government cannot continue to ignore this issue that is having such a negative impact on our communities.

“People across Fife have lost out to the tune of over £63million since 2008 – and over £9million in 2015/16 alone. This is a huge problem – and the UK government need to get serious about tackling it.

“FOBTs are so addictive they’re known as the ‘crack cocaine of gambling’ – and it is no wonder given how much people have lost out from using these toxic machines.

“The UK government must take action to stop people losing out even more – by reducing the number of machines allowed in bookmakers, limiting the stakes that can be bet, reducing the amount of time that can be spent on the machines, and taking action to ban the machines altogether if people continue to lose out.

“The Tories have dug their heels on this issue for long enough – it is time for them to take action to help people across Fife.”

ENDS


NOTES TO EDITORS

Estimated gross gambling yield (amount lost by FOBT gamblers) in 2015-16:
• £9,375,079

Cumulative estimated gross gambling yield (amount lost by FOBT gamblers) 2008-16:
• £63,514,755

Cumulative estimated gross gambling yield (amount lost by problem gamblers) 2008-16:
• £24,405,902

For more information on the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, please visit:

http://fairergambling.org/

 

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