Nipping issue in the bud
A campaign, ‘Harm From Gambling Starts Earlier Than You Think’, will target people experiencing, or at-risk of, harm from gambling and help them to be on the lookout for early signs of risky gambling behaviour.
Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation chief executive officer Louise Glanville said the campaign focused on moderate-risk gamblers, as research had identified they did not respond to traditional messages aimed at those experiencing more severe issues.
‘‘The campaign is designed to help those experiencing, or at-risk of, harm from gambling to recognise the early signs of harm and take action to address their gambling behaviour,’’ Ms Glanville said.
‘‘Our 2016 study, Assessing gamblingrelated harm in Victoria: A public health perspective, identified many different types of gambling harm and showed the overwhelming majority of people who experience harm are not those experiencing severe harm, but fall into the low or moderate risk categories.
‘‘Harm from gambling can cause a variety of issues, including health problems, emotional distress, relationship difficulties, financial burdens, as well as negatively impacting work performance.
‘‘The ‘Harm From Gambling Starts Earlier Than You Think’ campaign aims to provide people with the tools they need to identify early signs of gambling harm and take action to prevent it and ward off further severe gambling problems.’’
Signs of gambling harm can include reduced savings or spending on recreational activities and then get more advanced, such as getting behind on electricity or gas bills, or even a notice to evict.
The campaign is supported by online resources at betcheck.vic.gov.au which includes online tools, with information about harm for people who gamble, their families and friends.
It also includes an interactive quiz that enables people to reflect on their gambling and directs them to information about keeping their betting in check, or additional help and support if they need it.
‘‘Through the ‘Harm From Gambling Starts Earlier Than You Think’ campaign we are reaching out to people who may be gambling in a risky way and helping them identify the many different ways people can be harmed by gambling,’’ Ms Glanville said.
‘‘When we can intervene early to prevent harm from gambling, it’s good for the individual, their family and the community.’’ www.betcheck.vic.gov.au
For further information and to view the online resources and interactive quiz, visit: