Fixed Odds Betting Terminals

City wants ban on ‘crack cocaine’ betting machines: Liverpool Council warns people are losing jobs and turning to loan sharks because they are addicted to games

Posted on November 8, 2013 by admin

A council has demanded a ban on electronic betting machines – dubbed the crack cocaine of gambling – because of the growing problem of addiction.

Fixed-odds betting terminals allow punters to use debit cards and gamble up to £300 a minute – more than four times faster than casinos’ rate of play.

According to recent research, bookmakers are becoming increasingly reliant on them for revenue, with 80 per cent of their turnover coming from the machines.

Read the full article in The Daily Mail online.

Calls for gambling machines ban

Posted on November 7, 2013 by admin

Campaigners have called for the government to ban electronic gambling machines in betting shops across Liverpool and the rest of the UK.

The Campaign for Fairer Gambling claims that fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) are the fastest way to lose money and are luring in the poorest in society. Unlike fruit machines in pubs – where there is a £2 limit on stakes – gamblers can bet up to £100 every 20 seconds with their debit cards on FOBTs.

Read the full article in JMU Journalism online.

All bets are off: Campaigners praise Highland Council as they block new betting shop

Posted on October 21, 2013 by admin

Campaigners claim a landmark ruling to stop a new betting shop in the Highlands could halt the spread of casino-type gambling machines.

Highland Council’s licensing board are the first authority in Scotland and only the second in the UK to refuse a bookmaker’s operating licence.

They rejected an application from William Hill to open a bookies in the Merkinch area of Inverness – opposite a charity for people with drugs and alcohol addictions.

You can read the full article in the Daily Record here.

Government support for gambling prize rises criticised

Posted on October 17, 2013 by admin

The Evangelical Alliance has criticised the Government for continually raising the stakes and prizes on gambling machines.

Under the changes, the maximum stake is increasing from £2 to £5, while jackpots are rising from £4,000 to £10,000.

The biggest win from fruit machines with a maximum stake of £1 will increase from £70 to £100.

Read the full article in Christian Today online.

Campaign slams Government inaction on FOBTs

Posted on October 10, 2013 by admin

In its announcement on the Triennial Review of gaming machine stakes and prizes today, the DCMS has chosen to take no action against highly addictive Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) – the roulette machines found in betting shops.

Derek Webb, founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, who runs the Stop the FOBTs Campaign, said: “This is a ridiculous decision. It was a prime opportunity for the Government to exercise the precautionary principle and reduce the stakes on these addictive machines from £100 to £2, bringing them in line with all other British gaming machines.”

“There is mounting empirical and anecdotal evidence that FOBTs are driving the proliferation of betting shops, contributing to problem gambling, causing crime and violence in local communities, impacting on the working conditions of betting shop staff and being used for criminal activities such as money laundering.” (more…)

£12.2 billion gambled on betting shop roulette machines across London

Posted on October 7, 2013 by admin

The latest estimates of gambling on betting shop roulette machines, released by the Campaign for Fairer Gambling, show that across the Greater London region over £12.2 billion was gambled on them. With over 1,836 betting shops and 6,714 roulette machines London is estimated to have contributed £413 million to the betting industry’s £1.5 billion profits from the machines, which have been described as the most addictive gambling product in the UK.

The continuing controversy over the bookmakers’ roulette machines which are currently being reviewed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport has resulted in Members of Parliament across the country calling for action, including West Ham MP Lyn Brown who said “very poor areas are saturated with betting shops particularly compared with wealthier areas.

Hackney North MP Diane Abbot said “my concern is that these shops put little back into the community and can take advantage of areas with high levels of unemployment and poverty. They can also cause increased levels of crime including begging, drug crimes and burglaries.”

Conservative MP for Enfield Southgate David Burrowes also led a protest against betting shops in his constituency saying “there are just too many betting shops along Green Lanes. They have reached saturation levels and are diminishing the character of the high street.

Founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling Derek Webb, who will be featuring in a BBC documentary Inside Out, due to be broadcast in London on Monday on 7th October at 7.30pm said: “The proliferation of betting shops on our high streets is fuelled by highly addictive electronic gaming machines, where you can easily lose up to £300 in a minute. These aren’t pub fruit machines; these are high-stake, high-speed, high-risk gaming machines in easily accessible high street locations.”

A recent analysis of the money lost on what are known as Fixed Odd Betting Terminals (FOBTs) by Landman Economics revealed that across London up to 10,587 jobs could be lost over the next 10 years if spending on the machines continues to rise. It is predicted that player losses could grow to £814 million by 2023 in London alone.

Howard Reed of Landman Economics concluded that “Profits from FOBTs could double in real terms over the next ten years, resulting in a gain of over 11,000 jobs in the betting sector but a loss of almost 33,000 jobs elsewhere in the economy. But he warned “the extent that growth in FOBTs displaces other economic activity which is based on “buying local”, it is likely that growth in FOBTs in the betting sector is likely to have an even more negative impact on the local economy than we have forecast.”

Gambling Addict Likens Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals To Crack Cocaine

Posted on October 4, 2013 by admin

Earlier this week, BBC One East Midlands broadcasted a documentary-style programme called Inside Out that told the story of Roger Radler, a gambling addict from High Wycombe. Radler lost his job and wife and is now burdened with substantial debts after becoming addicted Fixed Odds Betting Terminals, or FOBTs as they name is abbreviated to.

“It’s the crack cocaine of the gambling industry,” claimed Radler, “You can get your high every 15 seconds and you are losing huge sums of money. At my worst, I probably lost a month’s salary in a couple of hours and that’s horrendous.”

Read the full article on the Poker News website online.

BBC Radio Stoke: Derek Webb discusses the impact of FOBTs

Posted on October 1, 2013 by admin

Listen to Campaign founder Derek Webb’s radio interview with BBC Radio Stoke’s Graham Torrington, as they discusses the impact of fixed odds betting terminals on high streets. Catch up online from 0:29:00.

BBC Three Counties Radio: Derek Webb discusses the impact of FOBTs

Posted on October 1, 2013 by admin

Listen to Derek Webb, founder of the Campaign for Fairer Gambling and Stop the FOBTs, discuss the ‘crack cocaine of gambling’ with Roberto Perrone on BBC Three Counties Radio online – from 1:06:00.

Watch Campaign founder Derek Webb’s appearance on BBC Inside Out

Posted on October 1, 2013 by admin

BBC news programme Inside Out looks into whether high street gaming laws should be changed. Watch Campaign founder Derek Webb’s appearance on the programme and find out why he is campaigning for a reduction in stakes and the implementation of sensible regulations on high speed roulette machines in betting shops.

You can watch the programme in full here.