Responsible gambling grabs the headlines at ICC 2018

Responsible gambling grabs the headlines at ICC 2018

Tuesday, February 6, 2018 Posted by Andy McCarron
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ICE week began with some clear messages about responsible gambling

ICE week at London ExCeL kicked off with some strong messages coming out of the International Casino Conference track of ICE VOX, the new name for ICE Conferences.

In the morning’s keynote speech, Sarah Harrision MBE, CEO of the UK Gambling Commission, stressed the need to “step up” work in the area of responsible gambling. Following that, in his opening address to the ICC, Per Jaldung, chairman of the European Casino Association, touched on a number of similar key industry issues – again with heavy emphasis on responsibility.

Jaldung spoke about the importance of diversity and inclusion, stressing the need for an equal and fair gender representation. He also talked in strong terms of responsible gaming, echoing and emphasising what is sure to be one of the key issues at this year’s ICE, across VOX conferences and the exhibition.

“It’s very important for us as an industry, across land-based and online, to follow the new technology and to see what solutions we can find,” said Jaldung. “For money laundering and responsible gambling, yes, but also for payment solutions and other technological opportunities.”

Following Jaldung’s address, the responsibility theme continued with a panel titled A Global View of Corporate Social Responsibility. Chaired by Peter Remmers, secretary of the European Association for the Study of Gambling, the panel included Susan Dolinski, vice president for communications at the British Columbia Lottery Corporation; Mike Rothwell, managing director EMEA for Caesars Entertainment; and Neil McArthur, general counsel and executive director at the Gambling Commission.

Dolinski said that CSR is bedded in the corporate values at BCLC. “We straddle this area, between regulation and profit.

“As an organisation, we’re quasi-governmental,” she said. “We are responsible to stakeholders and the public and not simply profit driven – although of course we do seek to generate money for the people of British Columbia.

“In 2009 we developed the GameSense programme,” continued Dolinski, “That was in response to the need to balance the government’s regulation of legal gaming with the wider implications of that gaming.

GameSense is a far-reaching programme, said Dolinski. “Appropriate response training is very important in British Columbia, along with GameSense advisors whose sole job it is in our properties to serve as a resource for players and staff, and to offer assistance to players who might be in distress.”

Totally Gaming says: The GameSense programme has, in British Columbia, been a success and become a model for regulators taking a lead on responsible gambling. Crucially, the BCLC’s proactivity has given the gaming sector in the Canadian province something to shout about, to be proud of. “GameSense has been the game changer,” said Dolinski, “moving problem gambling from being something ‘unmentionable’ to focussing on keeping gambling safe in a proactive manner.”

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