Gambling participation in 2019: behaviour, awareness and attitudes
Attitudes towards gambling
As well as overall perceptions of gambling this section includes more specific public attitudes and opinions towards gambling in Great Britain.
Respondents were asked about a series of attitudinal statements, originating from a shortened version of the Attitudes Towards Gambling Scale (ATGS-8)29 and the extent to which they agree with them was measured. This scale, consisting of a series of 8 statements, was developed with each statement expressing an attitude towards gambling, with five response options on a Likert scale from strongly agree to strongly disagree.
82% of respondents agreed that there are too many opportunities for gambling nowadays (a significant increase of 3 percentage points since 2018), whilst 73% agreed that gambling is dangerous for family life.
There was a significant increase in respondents stating that gambling should be discouraged (62%; a 4 percentage point rise since 2018) and a significant increase in respondents stating that it would be better if gambling was banned altogether (29%; a 4 percentage point increase from 2018).
There has been a significant decline in the proportion of respondents agreeing that ‘gambling livens up life’ (26%; a 2 percentage point decrease from 2018).
Figure 52: Proportion of respondents agreeing with individual attitude statements by year (Telephone Survey; n=4,003)
|Year to December 2016||Year to December 2017||Year to December 2018||Year to December 2019|
|There are too many opportunities for gambling nowadays||78%||80%||79%||82%|
|Gambling is dangerous for family life||69%||71%||71%||73%|
|Gambling should be discouraged||55%||57%||58%||62%|
|People should have the right to gamble whenever they want||67%||64%||62%||60%|
|Most people who gamble do so sensibly||41%||39%||36%||36%|
|It would be better if gambling was banned altogether||23%||25%||25%||29%|
|Gambling livens up life||32%||28%||28%||26%|
|On balance, gambling is good for society||15%||15%||13%||13%|
29 In the 2007 British Gambling Prevalence Survey (BGPS) questions were developed for the first time to capture this data. Due to constraints on questionnaire space in the 2010 BGPS, the number of attitude items was reduced, and the scale was redeveloped as a shortened eight item scale called the ATGS-8. The ATGS-8 statements were added to the Commission’s telephone survey in March 2016.
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Last updated: 18 July 2023
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