28 Jun 2019

Problem gambling: Government gives another $60m over three years

2:43 pm on 28 June 2019

The government is spending an extra $60 million over the next three years in an effort to tackle problem gambling, particularly among Māori, Pacific and Asian communities.

Generic gambling

Photo: bondvit/123RF

Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa announced this morning the government's latest gambling health strategy, which she says will include funding new pilot services.

She said one in five New Zealanders will be affected by gambling during their lifetime, and while the harm has dropped in the last 25 years, things have plateaued in the last five years.

Mrs Salesa said she was concerned about inequity among vulnerable communities.

"Pilot programmes that are currently underserviced particularly for Māori, Pacific and Asian communities, will be developed and we will use innovative technology to manage and mitigate gambling harm."

She says the cost of the strategy will be covered by a problem gambling levy paid by gaming machine operators, casinos, the New Zealand Racing Board and the Lotteries Commission.

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