No more pokies for Warragul - Alliance for Gambling Reform

No more pokies for Warragul

Dear Mayor Councillor Joe Gauci and fellow councillors

As our local representatives, we call on you to reject more poker machines for Warragul. Please don’t issue a planning permit to the Warragul Country Club - enough is enough!

Living in Baw Baw Shire should be safe for everyone. Unfortunately, too many of our friends, neighbours and residents are harmed by dangerous and addictive poker machines. 

The extra 20 poker machines that the Warragul Country Club wants to install would be likely to result in a further $1 million being lost each year by the local community. In 2014-15, $13,295,313 was lost on pokies in Baw Baw Shire. That’s an increase of 5.2% from 2013-14. Over $4.5 million of that was lost at the 60 existing poker machines at the Warragul Country Club.

If Council doesn’t issue them with a planning permit, they can’t proceed. As local residents we call on you to say NO!

Will you sign?

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Australians spend more per person on gambling than any other country in the world - almost double that of New Zealand.

Poker machines are the crystal meth of gambling, making up $11 billion of Australia’s total gambling losses in clubs and pubs alone.

Australians spend more money gambling than on other activities that can be addictive and dangerous including alcohol, tobacco and all illegal drugs. It is a major driver of household debt, and family and personal dysfunction.

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The Australian gambling industry pocketed $21 billion dollars in the year to March 2014, largely from Australians who can least afford it. A complacent attitude to the gambling industry has resulted in few marketing, planning or technology constraints.

It’s time to tackle one of Australia’s biggest causes of inequality and hardship.

Some of our largest companies and investment funds have a vested interest in poker machine gambling. Governments want few restraints given that $5.5 billion flow into their coffers every year. This is a difficult problem to unlock. Many Australians have a stake in the future of the gambling industry through their superannuation, equity investments and participation in clubs and pubs.

Over the past twenty years this is an industry that has been unleashed on Australia, without reasonable regulatory controls or even a genuine community conversation.