Ann Coffey

Fixed odds betting terminals

I agree that problem gambling is a real issue. In 2016 £1.8 billion was lost on high-speed machines. Some of those losses leading to family breakdown and suicide. We should be concerned about advertising during live sports matches which can have a huge audience that encourage people to gamble. We should also be concerned about the growth in online gambling where unlimited stakes are available.

Whilst I therefore welcome the Government’s commitment to reduce the maximum stakes on fixed odds betting machines from £100 to £2, they must also take action to tackle online problem gambling.  This includes looking at regulations around advertising.

I know there was significant disappointment with the Chancellor’s decision to delay the implementation of the reduction in the maximum stake until October 2019 and as you know the Minister, Tracey Crouch MP resigned following this announcement. I will of course support any amendment to the Finance Bill which brings forward the date of implementation . Thank you once again for contacting me.