Gaming Control Board Recognizes Problem Gambling Awareness Month
and Various Resources for Help
HARRISBURG, PA: The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board is recognizing March as National Problem Gambling Awareness Month in order to promote resources intended to help individuals with a gambling addiction.
The Board, at its February 10th meeting, adopted a resolution recognizing March as Problem Gambling Awareness Month. The complete resolution can be viewed at this link.
Additionally, the Board has directed its staff to raise awareness of problem gambling and available resources by providing a public booth in the Capitol Rotunda in Harrisburg on March 9, 16, and 23, 2016 from 11:00 AM to 1:30 PM.
Gaming Control Board Executive Director Kevin O’Toole says the agency’s role in protecting the interests of the public is not limited to making sure casinos are safe and gaming is fair, but to readily provide help to individuals who develop a gambling problem.
“We fully understand that one of the key reasons that casino gaming has been successful from a revenue standpoint… the easy proximity of casinos to a large portion of the state’s population… also plays a role in accelerating gambling problems,” O’Toole says. “This is why the law, rightly so, annually earmarks millions of dollars in casino revenue through the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs to provide assistance in identifying a gambling problem and treating the individual.”
Elizabeth Lanza, Director of the PGCB’s Bureau of Compulsive and Problem Gambling, says the agency also offers assistance to those who have developed a casino-related gambling problem through a Self-Exclusion List. The list allows a person to request to be banned from all casino gaming activities and to be prohibited from collecting any winnings, recovering any losses or accepting complimentary gifts or services or any other thing of value at any Pennsylvania casino.
“For most individuals, the urge to gamble excessively at casinos is controllable. For others, however, the temptation to gamble beyond one’s means is strong,” Lanza says. “The availability of the Self-Exclusion List provides an effective tool that, together with problem gambling treatment, combats the urge to gamble.”
More information on problem gambling is accessible through the PGCB’s web site, www.gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov. Additional information about problem gambling, or to seek help for yourself or a loved one, can also be found at www.paproblemgambling.com or by calling either of two toll-free hotlines at 877-565-2112 or 800-848-1880.
About the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board:
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board was established in 2004 and is tasked to oversee all aspects of the state’s casino industry. There are 10 stand-alone and racetrack casinos in operation, along with the two resort casinos. These facilities collectively employ over 17,000 people and generate an average of $3.7 million per day in tax revenue from slot machine and table games play. The largest portion of that money is used for property tax reduction to all Pennsylvania homeowners with additional tax revenue going to the horse racing industry, economic development projects, fire companies, county fairs, water and sewer projects, the Commonwealth’s General Fund, and to local governments that host casinos.
Additional information about both the PGCB’s regulatory efforts and Pennsylvania’s casino gaming industry can be found at www.gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov. You can also follow the agency on Twitter by choosing @PAGamingControl.
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