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The Gambling Commission has launched a consultation asking for views from the public and the industry on the levels and nature of social responsibility protections that gambling operators must provide.

The consultation comes at a key point for gambling regulation in Great Britain. Public concern about gambling is heightened. Advances in technology and changes in consumer preference are offering new opportunities to target gambling-related harm while not unduly constraining safe leisure gambling. Operators are coming to terms increasingly with taking prime responsibility for their products, which are fun for most but pose real risk of serious harm for some. The new laws on online gambling mean that effective and proportionate harm prevention measures can be implemented across the board without our licensees being undercut by operators from less demanding jurisdictions.

The consultation proposes a number of specific changes to social responsibility provisions in the light of experience (for example, participation in a national self-exclusion scheme for online gambling and the introduction of compulsory third party testing for the majority of operators). It also invites informed public debate on how far to constrain the leisure pursuits of the many to prevent serious harm to the few.

This consultation offers an opportunity for everyone to have their say on these critical questions. 

Notes to editors

  1. The Gambling Commission (the Commission) regulates gambling in the public interest alongside its co-regulators local licensing authorities. It does so by keeping crime out of gambling, by ensuring that gambling is conducted fairly and openly, and by protecting children and vulnerable people from being harmed or exploited by gambling. Subject to these overriding public protection objectives, as regulator of the National Lottery the Commission monitors and challenges Camelot to raise the maximum amount for good causes. The Commission also provides independent advice to government on gambling in Britain. 
  2. The Commission and local licensing authorities are responsible for licensing and regulating all gambling in Great Britain other than spread betting, which is the responsibility of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
  3. See the Terms & Conditions section of our website for information on legal advice.

For further information please contact our press office on (0121) 230 6700 or email communications@gamblingcommission.gov.uk.

Posted on 07 August 2014