News & views

The high-stakes gambling review is too little, too late

Posted on September 30, 2016 by admin

After nine months of delay, allowing another £340 million to drop conveniently into Treasury coffers, the government has announced a review into the maximum stakes allowed on fixed odds betting terminals.

These machines allow the hopelessly optimistic to gamble up to £100 every 20 seconds on games such as roulette. There are now almost 35,000 of these terminals across the country, effectively turning high street bookmakers into casinos. Punters lost £1.7 billion on them last year, allowing the Treasury to bank £450 million in tax.

Read the full story in The Times

Prime Minister, this was your 2005 question, but what is your 2016 answer?

Posted on September 29, 2016 by admin

The Campaign for Fairer Gambling calls on the Prime Minister to take action on fixed odds betting terminals, the same machines she asked for action against back in 2005. (more…)

Rumour mill: UK government may review FOBT policy

Posted on September 28, 2016 by admin

The UK government has been rumoured to be contemplating a new review of its gambling legislation pertaining to the operation of fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs).

According to a report in British tabloid newspaper the Daily Mail, the UK’s new prime minister Theresa May has “cleared the way” for parliamentary discussion of potential restrictions on the gaming terminals, which have been dubbed by their opponents as the “crack cocaine of gambling.”

Read the full story in Betting Business

To Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, and the MPs with the bookies at your conference

Posted on September 21, 2016 by admin

The Campaign for Fairer Gambling writes to all Labour MPs ahead of the upcoming party conference in Liverpool. (more…)

CI Bitesize: Review of Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals

Posted on September 20, 2016 by admin

Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs), dubbed the ‘crack cocaine’ of gambling, are set for a Government review.

Watch the full feature on the Christian Institute YouTube page

High streets turned into casinos, Panorama told

Posted on September 20, 2016 by admin

Betting machines that allow users to stake £100 every 20 seconds are turning high streets into casinos, a former gambler has told BBC Panorama.

Matt Zarb-Cousin was speaking to presenter Wendy Bendel, whose boyfriend killed himself after using Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs).

She heard how the spread of FOBTs across the country was an “epidemic”, ruining people’s lives.

Read the full story on the Christian Institute website

BBC Radio 5 Live Drive

Posted on September 16, 2016 by admin

Wendy Bendel shares her tragic tale about how FOBTs caused her partner to commit suicide.

Listen again at 2 hours 40 mins

UK Initiates Fixed Odds Betting Terminal Inquiry

Posted on September 16, 2016 by admin

There has been a great deal of effort made to collect information about the harm to society that the proliferation of fixed-odds betting terminals is responsible for in the United Kingdom. The need for information that parliamentarians can understand regarding the issues surrounding the use of the controversial machines has become a priority for the U.K. Culture Secretary John Whittingdale.

Now UK Prime Minister Theresa May has said the government will initiate an inquiry into the issues surrounding fixed-odds betting terminals. The ability to wager up to £100 (€118/$132) per time on the machines has sparked the most criticism from the public.

 Read the full story on online-casinos.com

Why are Gambling Machines Addictive?

Posted on September 16, 2016 by admin

Wendy Bendel’s partner killed himself after struggling with a 20-year gambling addiction. In a confession he wrote for Wendy, he singled out the high-stakes, high-frequency fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs)found in bookmakers across the UK.

Watch the full Panorama feature on BBC iPlayer

Panorama: Why Are Gambling Machines Addictive? review – scandal of the century

Posted on September 14, 2016 by admin

Go to any high street in the country – apart from perhaps the really posh ones, in very affluent places – and you’ll see a lot of betting shops. Often, you’ll find more than one branch of the same variety – two Ladbrokes, say – within spitting distance. The reason for that is FOBTs – fixed-odds betting terminals. Only four machines are allowed in any one branch. You want eight? You have to open another shop. And you do want eight, because FOBTs bring the industry £1.7bn a year. And so what if it’s £1.7bn from the poor, the sick and the vulnerableOr that Britain’s high streets are being turned into gaming arcades of misery?

Read the full story in the Guardian