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Lived Experience Advisory Panel: Terms of reference

Role

The Lived Experience Advisory Panel provides expert independent advice to the Gambling Commission. Its advice is based on its members personal lived experience of gambling harms.

The Gambling Commission considers a wide range of evidence to inform decisions to make gambling safer for consumers. An essential part of this evidence is input directly from people with lived experience of gambling harms.

The Gambling Commission is responsible for decision-making which draws on the advice it receives from its expert advisory groups alongside other evidence and input from a wide range of stakeholders.

To ensure balance, the Gambling Commission engage with other consumers, including those who gamble without suffering harm. This is done through a variety of surveys, panels, stakeholder engagement activities and research.

Scope

The advice provided by the panel will be relevant to the Gambling Commission’s:

  • Safer gambling policies - such as the requirements placed on operators and how the Gambling Commission contributes to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms.
  • Operational activities – such as ways of interacting with consumers.
  • Advice to other bodies and government.

The focus of the Lived Experience Advisory Panel’s work is managed through a workplan agreed between the Gambling Commission and the panel itself. The panel is not responsible for directly advising other bodies beyond the Gambling Commission.

Membership

The members of the Lived Experience Advisory Panel are appointed by the Gambling Commission based on their individual personal experience of gambling harms. The target membership for the panel will be ten members – with up to twelve members as a maximum. This will include a chair.

The panel’s membership, collectively, is designed to provide perspectives from experience of a wide range of gambling harms. Gambling harms take many forms and can result from people’s own gambling or from the gambling of somebody else – such as a family member. Examples of the types of harm members may have suffered are explained in a published framework paper (PDF opens in new tab).

The panel is formed through an open recruitment process, designed to encourage diverse participation from people from a wide range of backgrounds and from across England, Scotland and Wales.

The members of the Lived Experience Advisory Panel are appointed as individuals. They do not serve to represent any other body or organisation. The members are remunerated and serve terms of two years – and will serve a maximum of two terms. The day rate will be £270 per day and members are expected to commit up to one day per month to the role.

The chair is appointed by the panel itself and their role includes facilitating meetings and acting as the primary point of contact with the Gambling Commission. Recognising that members capacity may change over time, the chair serves a fixed-term which can be rotated between members of the Panel (for practical purposes we expect these terms to be no less than six-months). The chair can also appoint vice-chairs to support them if required.

Values

In the same way as other Gambling Commission Advisory Groups, the panel works in accordance with the Nolan Principles of Public Life (opens in new tab):

  • selflessness
  • integrity
  • objectivity
  • accountability
  • openness
  • honesty
  • leadership.

Conflicts

In the same way as other Gambling Commission Advisory Groups, the approach to managing conflicts of interest is designed to demonstrate that the panel’s advice is free of influence from any vested interests.

All members interests related to gambling are declared and published in a register of interests on the Gambling Commission website.

Whether they are acting as individuals or for organisations where they have a senior role (as Chief Executives, Directors, Senior Management or Trustees – whether paid or unpaid) members of the panel will:

  • Not be employed directly by the gambling industry
  • Not work in an advisory capacity to the gambling industry – whether paid or unpaid
  • Not receive funding generated through voluntary donations from the gambling industry
  • Not be eligible to receive the annual financial contributions which are required by the Gambling Commission by gambling operators – i.e. be on the LCCP RET list (opens in new tab).

Members of the panel will not be prevented from making an application for or receiving a Regulatory Settlement (opens in new tab), approved by the Gambling Commission, during their term . We note however, the need for interests related to these to be clearly declared and these will be managed on a case by case basis, taking into account factors such as links with industry.

These measures are in place to avoid perceptions that the advice provided by the Lived Experience Advisory Panel could be influenced by any possible current or future commercial benefit.

People with past criminal convictions linked to gambling harms are welcome to join the panel. These people will have relevant experience of this form of gambling-related harm and these perspectives will be valuable to the work of the panel. If someone is subject to a live and on-going criminal investigation, they would not be able to be a member of the panel. If someone is subject to live and on-going regulatory case work, then conflicts arising will be managed on a case by case basis.

Meetings

The Lived Experience Advisory Panel meets with the Gambling Commission on a regular basis. These will be arranged based on the required timetable to deliver workplan priorities. The meetings will be no less frequent than once every two months.

In between meetings, advice may be provided in writing via correspondence. Time limited groups may also be formed to develop specific pieces of advice.

Meetings of the Lived Experience Advisory Panel are routinely attended by relevant Gambling Commission staff.

Reporting and publication

The Lived Experience Advisory Panel advises the CEO, Senior Leadership Team and the Board of Commissioners.

Formal written advice from the panel will be published on the Gambling Commission website, alongside the Gambling Commission’s response.

The Chair will meet with the Board of Commissioners at least twice a year. In addition, there will be further engagement through workshops, seminars, meetings and other activities.

Press and media

If members are engaging in any media or press activity we would encourage you to inform us so we can be prepared if we are approached by the press for comment. To be clear, the Gambling Commission does not seek to restrict your public comments on gambling but would ask that you make it clear that you are speaking in a personal capacity and not on behalf of the LEAP.

Resources

Secretariat support provided through the Gambling Commission will support the panel’s training, capacity building, development, administration, note taking and the support it requires to produce its independent advice. Secretariat support will be flexible and agreed with the chair to ensure the panel is adequately supported to undertake its role.

Although the Lived Experience Advisory Panel has no delegated budget, the Gambling Commission will support the panel to access appropriate training and development to meet needs identified by the panel.

Arrangements for support will be kept under review to ensure the panel is supported to develop its capacity and carry out its role effectively.

Safeguarding

The Gambling Commission recognises the need to ensure members of this panel can engage safely in the development of advice and minimises the risk that further harm is suffered by members because of their involvement. A safeguarding policy is in place and is reviewed annually.

The Lived Experience Advisory Panel will be free to discuss policy topics with other groups representing people with lived experience in other organisations that work to reduce gambling harms.

Two-way lines of communication will be established with lived experience panels involved in supporting the implementation of the National Strategy in UK nations – e.g. the Health and Social care Alliance facilitated group in Scotland (opens in new tab).

In any discussions with other groups, care should be taken to avoid disclosing any information shared in confidence by the Gambling Commission.

Review

The Gambling Commission will review these terms of reference annually in April to ensure they remain fit for purpose.

Updated October 2020

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