At present, UK operators of land casinos donate at least 0.1% of their Gross Gaming Yield to various charities.
However, a landmark announcement by the National Casino Forum, will see the casinos guarantee that 0.1% of their GGY will go directly to GambleAware, the independent charity that helps minimize gambling-related harm in the country.
A new, transparent mechanism has been implemented that will ensure that the casinos exceed the voluntary funding target for GambleAware.
The promise comes after GambleAware complained earlier this year that not all operators were honoring their commitment to transfer 0.01% of their GGY (wagers minus payouts) to the charity.
While GambleAware was hoping to raise £10 million to help problem gamblers, it only managed to come up with £8 million.
National Casino Forum's Promise
Speaking on behalf of the National Casino Forum, the group's Chief Executive, Tracy Damestani said: "This is a historic commitment by casino operators. They are guaranteeing that the casino sector will donate 0.1% of Gross Gambling Yield to GambleAware, in addition to making other charitable donations. They are underpinning this pledge by introducing a transparent new payment system."
She said that the UK casino sector has always supported fundraising for research, education and treatment, and casino operators are determined to go beyond both the letter and spirit of the UK Gambling Act in their support for responsible and safer gambling.
"They want to ensure that research, education, prevention and treatment programs are fully funded across the gambling industry," said Damestani.
In order to be a member of the National Casino Forum, casino operators have to pledge 0.1% to charities. Now, casinos will still be able to make donations to other causes but the transparent new system means that the NCF will be able to check if members are reaching their 0.1% target to GambleAware.
GambleAware Welcomes Announcement
GambleAware has always pushed for stronger commitment by the UK's land casino sector in funding research and treatment of problem gambling.
The announcement, therefore, was welcomed by the charity.
GambleAware's Chief Executive, Marc Etches said: "It is imperative that all businesses deriving a profit from commercial gambling in Britain support GambleAware in the delivery of the National Responsible Gambling Strategy."
"This initiative by NCF's members will ensure transparency in relation to the casino sector's funding of research, education and treatment, and sets an important bench-mark for others."
The independent charity, GambleAware is a commissioning and grant-making body which aims to broaden the public's understanding of gambling related problems as a public health issue. The charity will also help problem gamblers get support as quickly and effectively as possible.
It order to meet its obligations, the group requires at least £10 million each year, and depends solely on the commercial gambling sector to support the charity.
According to GambleAware, it spent £7.9 million in the 12 months to March 31st, 2017. 19% of this amount was spent on research, while 81% was spent on education and treatment.
As an independent national charity, GambleAware is registered with and regulated by the Charity Commission for England and Wales, and follows the Charity Governance Code for best practice.Visit our Land Casino Page