Gambling News 22nd July 2018 - Alliance for Gambling Reform

Gambling News 22nd July 2018

In this latest edition of Gambling News, we cover the fabulous Collingwood divestment, Victoria’s terrible pokies pub deal, Essendon’s Melton delay, Pat Daley’s Dee Why RSL board tilt and Tuesday’s Mayors event on the steps of the Victorian Parliament - amongst plenty of other interesting material. Click on the links below to read all of these interesting stories.

Collingwood quits the pokies - who will be next?
Essendon delays Melton as councils ponder pokies on their land
Cr Pat Daley OAM vs ClubsNSW and Dee Why RSL pokies den
ClubsNSW, conflicts of interest and dubious MOUs
Victoria caves into hotel lobby,  increasing harm and losses
Victoria set to reveal biggest jump in pokies losses for a decade
Countdown to critical Crown Melbourne licence decision
Come along Tuesday as Vic Mayors unite on steps of Parliament
Welcome to our new Champions for Change co-ordinator
Best of the gambling media and interviews

Collingwood quits the pokies - who will be next?

The Alliance was thrilled last week when Collingwood Football Club decisively exited the toxic pokies industry by selling its two Melbourne venues to Melbourne Racing Club, which is now the biggest not-for-profit operator in Victoria.

We support pokies divestment, with no exclusions - the idea being that eventually state governments won’t be able to find anyone of good credit to joint venture with them in what amounts to a version of state-sponsored abuse.

Therefore, when a big name gets out, that’s progress.

President Eddie McGuire and all the Collingwood directors have sent a powerful message to the community that they no longer wish to be associated with a product which is designed to addict and causes enormous harm in the community.

Collingwood was third on the AFL pokies league ladder with gamblers losing $12.24 million at their two venues in 2016-17 so this is the biggest pokies divestment in the unfortunate history of AFL clubs ripping more than $2 billion from gamblers over the past 25 years.   

As Tim Costello was quoted in The Age: “Well done Eddie, you are trail-blazer who is looking after the battlers and leading by example.”

The focus has now quickly shifted to Tim’s beloved Essendon Football Club to withdraw its proposal for a new 24 year pokies venue lease at the Melton Country Club, which was due for decision at City of Melton as early as Monday night (see recent Alliance newsletter plus reports in The Age) but has now been delayed, thankfully.

The Alliance receives strong financial support from Victorian councils and the Collingwood exit is a great example of how local government can drive pokies divestment.

City of Melbourne’s contribution to Collingwood’s exit came from both directly writing to all its clubs and pubs encouraging divestment and also inserting provisions in a $300,000 a year access arrangement at the Holden Centre which gave Collingwood a financial incentive to exit.

After Collingwood approached City of Melbourne seeking a $3 million 10 year deal for council’s leisure members to be able to access its $70 million Holden Centre facilities when they weren’t being used, it was CEO Ben Rimmer who came up with the idea of inserting a clause at the 5 year mark which reviewed the contract if Collingwood still owned pokies dens.

Lo and behold, 3 years later Collingwood is out and will get to keep the $300,000 a year funding deal with the capital city council.

City of Melbourne has shown the local government sector can be the engine room of pokies reform given the dominance of the industry over the major political parties and the addiction of state governments to the $6 billion in revenue they make from gambling each year.

As councils and AFL clubs show the way, eventually the most irresponsible operators in Australia’s pokies market – State Governments, Woolworths and the big members of ClubsNSW – will bow to community demands and follow suit.

Essendon delays Melton as councils ponder pokies on their land

The Age recently revealed on the back page that Essendon Football Club is pushing for a new lease to keep operating its Melton Country Club pokies venue, which is rented from City of Melton. Thankfully, the Bombers decided not to push ahead with seeking approval at Monday night’s council meeting and hopefully both sides will reconsider their whole approach, especially given the move by Collingwood.

This is pretty simple - Essendon should not ask for a new 24 year pokies lease and if they do, the 9 elected Melton councillors, acting as responsible landlords, should say no, or at the very least insert a City of Melbourne-style clause into the lease providing incentives for future divestment.

The issue of pokies venues on council-owned land is far too prevalent across Australia, but at least it gives councillors more influence to intervene when it comes to lease renewal. Yes, Clubs NSW, pokies is a matter for local government, particularly at the hundreds of NSW venues located on council-owned land.

The Melton Country Club has 89 pokies and generates annual losses of about $5.5 million. We’ll know the 2017-18 figures at 11am this Friday when Victoria discloses its venue level losses, something every other Australian state should do as well.

The Alliance has been putting pressure on Essendon chairman Lindsay Tanner, a former Federal Finance Minister with a reputation for transparency, innovation and honesty,  to show leadership and a social conscience by leading the club out of the pokies business.

More than 400 letters were sent to Essendon last week after our digital campaigner Hillary Montague put together this petition which many of you responded to.

We’ve dodged a bullet at the July 23 meeting but pencil August 20 in the diary as that is when the next City of Melton council meeting will be held and the Bombers might just run the gauntlet, unless we can successfully pressure both the club and the councillors to get out of the pokies business completely.

Essendon has a lot of high profile supporters, many of whom want the club out of pokies. Indeed, City of Melbourne deputy mayor Arron Wood, who just spent an impressive 5 months as acting Lord Mayor, went public at last Tuesday’s committee saying the following when asked about Collingwood’s divestment:

“I applaud the move. I recognise, as the Lord Mayor said, there is a move on in the AFL to divest.  The most wonderful club in the league, the mighty Bombers, unfortunately, are still invested in the pokies industry so I hope that one day I will be able to stand here as a proud Bomber having won the premiership and seen our club also follow the divestment process.”

Listen to what 6 of the City of Melbourne councillors said when asked about the Collingwood divestment, starting 1 hour and 6 minutes into this audio file. They were one of the earliest leadership councils to join The Alliance and are clearly very proud to have played a constructive role. Wouldn’t it be great if City of Sydney, City of Adelaide and City of Brisbane got into this space as well?

Cr Pat Daley OAM vs ClubsNSW and Dee Why RSL pokies den

Cr Pat Daley - what a legend!

Not only is the veteran Northern Beaches councillor championing a pioneering gambling harm policy - he’s running a board ticket at the upcoming AGM of the ruthless Dee Why RSL to try and drive reform at the casino-like organisation.

First, we need to recap.

After Fairfax’s Nick O’Malley broke the story about the tragic suicide of Northern Beaches builder Gary Van Duinen on July 1, Fairfax columnist Peter FitzSimons summed up the feelings of many with this powerful column in the  Sydney Morning Herald.

Alliance deputy chairman Allison Keogh also had this opinion piece in The Sydney Morning Herald. The Dee Why RSL was reckless and ruthless in the way it dealt with Gary and deserved everything it got in this stinging SMH editorial.

Sadly, the Dee Why RSL and its peak body, ClubsNSW, have shown no contrition.

When Cr Pat Daley announced his board tilt, the directors ran for cover and allowed ClubsNSW to launch a smear in The Manly Daily. What about expressing regret for refusing to help Gary’s family cover the cost of his funeral?

Pat responded strongly in yesterday’s edition of The Manly Daily, and also revealed all sorts of interesting Liberal Party associations with the gambling industry through this story in the Sydney Morning Herald on Thursday.

Pat Daley OAM has been a 50 year member of the Liberal Party, proving that tackling gambling harm should not be a matter of party politics. Everyone can be on this reform train, just like conservative peer in the UK Lord Chadlington who inspired us all with this column last week.

ClubsNSW, conflicts of interest and dubious MOUs

By launching a laughable conflict of interest campaign against Cr Pat Daley for daring to support pokies reform, ClubsNSW has shone a light on the enormous conflicts which run right through the gambling industry and its rent-seeking from politicians across Australia.

For instance, ClubsNSW is hoping to announce another one of those notorious MOU agreements with the NSW Coalition at its annual conference in October, despite the peak body and its membership deluging donations, perks, consultancies, employment and benefits on Coalition MPs, office holders, influencers and staffers at many levels.

And how can ClubsNSW pretend to be about community, when it is really just a wholly owned subsidiary of the gambling industry? What sort of genuine community club peak body would have the world’s largest poker machine manufacturer, London-based IGT, as the major sponsor of its annual conference?

ClubsNSW is clearly compromised by accepting direct conference funding from foreign gambling sources, so an Alliance staffer emailed one of the independent IGT directors, Italian academic Alberto Dessy, and this is how the exchange unfolded.

Email to IGT independent director Alberto Dessy

Hi Alberto,

Just wondering if you could forward this request onto your board colleagues at IGT. In Australia, The Alliance for Gambling Reform is concerned about excessive gambling industry influence over community clubs.

To that end, would it be possible for IGT to withdraw as principal sponsor of the upcoming 2018 Clubs New South Wales annual conference. Details are here:

Kind regards
Stephen Mayne

The reply came back as follows:

Hi Steven (sic),

I asked for more information about the issue, then if it's the case I'll speak to the chairman and eventually to the Board.

Best regards, Alberto

So far, ClubNSW have declined to remove IGT as the largest sponsor of its conference. Given this will involve pokies industry largesse deluged on every attendee, surely there will be conflicts of interest left, right and centre as the debate unfolds about whether directors of NSW pokies dens are conflicted by their dealings with the pokies manufacturers?

Victoria caves into hotel lobby,  increasing harm and losses

We were dismayed to discover last week that the Victorian Government has quietly ended the long-standing 50-50 pokies split between pubs and clubs and will instead allocate 414 lapsed club entitlements to the more aggressive pubs sector. See how Nick Toscano from The Age covered the story.

Alliance spokesman Tim Costello revealed the move on ABC Melbourne last Wednesday after we discovered this Ministerial order by Gaming Minister Marlene Kairouz was quietly gazetted on July 9. Cynically, the government did not issue a media release announcing the controversial move. Talk about duck and weave spin doctoring. If politicians are going to dive further into the pokies sewer, at least be up front about it.

Under the secretive orders, once the 27,372 new 20 year pokies licences come into effect on August 16, 2022, clubs will only hold 48.49% of statewide machines, whereas the hotels sector will have 51.51%.

The Government knows that pokies pubs are significantly more lucrative than clubs, which also pay a lower rate of tax.

The typical Victorian club only makes about $80,000 per year on its pokies whereas hotels extract about $130,000 and the Woolworths ALH division is operating at more than $140,000 in annual losses per machine.

So this decision to hand over 414 lapsed Victorian club entitlements to the hotels sector will further increase losses by at least $20 million year but potentially as much as $50 million, assuming the 414 entitlements in August 2022 go from zero losses to the average pub rate of $130,000 a year.

That’s because there is currently around 800 unused club entitlements in Victoria where the government can’t find enough not-for-profit club operators willing to prey on people and collect their pokies taxes in a joint venture arrangement.

With almost 40% market share in the Victorian pokies pubs business, Woolworths certainly gets the job done for the Victorian Treasury in the pubs space, whilst deluging misery and harm on safe Labor seats in the process.

With AFL clubs sprinting for the exits and the industry’s reputation spiralling further south, there is an element of stranded asset amongst Victorian pokies clubs.

This is why the Government doubled the maximum amount of pokies a single club chain can run from 420 to 840 in last year’s legislative package. It knew some AFL clubs wanted to get out and that a couple of the bigger racing clubs, such as Melbourne and Moonee Valley, were buyers.

The Alliance argued strongly that the surplus club licences should have been retired to reduce gambling harm in the community, especially in suburbs suffering above average levels of stress, but instead the big pub chains such as Woolworths, Castello’s, Zagames and Black Rhino will be able to further expand their empires.

However, even the pub chains are grappling with the emerging issue of stranded assets. Zagames have been trying to sell its 6 venues for the past couple of months and the proposed sale of the Coles’ pub business to private equity giant KKR also seems to have gone quiet. Maybe Australian-style pokies are even too toxic for the world’s most famous private equity firm.

Hotels are already extracting about $1.7 billion a year from Victorian pokies gamblers compared with only $900 million for clubs, with Woolworths gouging $666 million or approximately 40% of all hotel pokies revenue in 2016-17.

Under the current longstanding 50-50 rule in Victoria, clubs and pubs are each capped at 13,686 of the 27,372 machines outside of Crown Melbourne. The pubs sector will now increase to 14,100 whilst club licences will be capped at 13,272. The 2016-17 VCGLR annual report disclosed (see p40) that, as at June 2017, there were only 12,884 club licences attached to approved venues, compared with 13,644 for hotels, meaning there is currently 802 unused clubs entitlements in Victoria.

Woolworths is capped at 35% of all pub entitlements in Victorian so the 51.51% pubs cap will increase the maximum number of machines Woolworths can run by 145 from 4790 to 4935. Club chains, excluding the federation of RSLs which are treated as separate entities, are all capped at 840 machines or just 6.33% of the new overall clubs cap of 13,272 machines.

Woolworths told ABC Melbourne on Tuesday morning that it will not  bid for any new licences as part of the current government auction, prompting Tim Costello to call for them to get out of the industry altogether if a relatively small increase is considered so toxic.

Indeed, it’s a fair question to ask: why should Woolworths/ALH be allowed to operate 4935 Victorian poker machines when clubs are capped at 840? No other state has such a special favourable deal for a single operator, in this case a giant supermarket chain in partnership with a pokies billionaire.

And if Woolworths really don’t want the extra 145 entitlements, why are they currently taking City of Whittlesea to the Supreme Court trying to get 40 new machines into the heritage Commercial Hotel in South Morang?” That case is scheduled to be heard in February next year (See background.)

Victoria set to reveal biggest jump in pokies losses for a decade

Australians are already the world’s biggest gamblers in per capita terms and giving hotels a majority of Victoria’s poker machine will just cause more harm. There has already been a troubling 6% rise in Victorian monthly losses since the reckless bipartisan deal last November to legislate for new 20 year pokies licences.

The 2017-18 venue loss data will be released by the VCGLR at 11am this Friday and with $2472 million already lost in the 11 months to May, an overall rise of $91 million to $2.7 billion is expected.

This would represent the biggest annual increase since the $94 million jump to the all-time record annual loss of $2707 million in 2008-09, when communities were stressed by the GFC and the Rudd Government was making large cash handouts.

The past 10 years of pokies losses in Victoria have been as follows:

2008-09: up $94m to $2707m
2009-10: down $110m to $2597m
2010-11: up $54m to $2651m
2011-12: up $30m to $2681m
2012-13: down $191m to $2490m
2013-14: up $14m to $2504m
2014-15: up $68m to $2572m
2015-16: up $44m to $2616m
2016-17: down $7m to $2609m
2017-18: up about $91m to $2700m (confirmed Friday)

As The Alliance noted in this statement when the 2016-17 venue loss data was released, there is only one club in the top 25 venues across the state. Woolworths/ALH led with 7 of the top 25 venues and is expected to be responsible for about $700 million of the $2.7 billion lost in 2017-18.

Handing over club entitlements to pubs will make this worse because it is the pubs which operate 20 hours a day, offer sophisticated loyalty schemes like the Woolworths Monty’s Rewards program and pursue aggressive marketing strategies such as ‘kids eat free’ offers.

The Alliance distributed this flyer to Woolworths shareholders at the 2017 AGM listing the 51 of 80 Victorian pokies venues which it operates the maximum 20 hours a day. We have engaged extensively with Woolworths over the past year but there’s been little movement, as was outlined in this statement.

Alliance director Dr Susan Rennie stood for the Woolworths board at the 2017 AGM and delivered this memorable speech in support of her candidacy. The Alliance is contemplating further action in 2018 if the board continues to do nothing to address Australia’s world record levels of gambling harm.

Indeed, overloaded Sydney-based Woolworths and Origin Energy chairman Gordon Cairns is up for election at the Macquarie Group AGM this Thursday and we will be arranging for him to receive some attention as to why he doesn’t quit Macquarie and instead replace Roger Corbett as chairman of ALH, the pokies joint venture which is run out of Melbourne by billionaire hotelier Bruce Mathieson.

The Woolworths market share is highest in Victoria courtesy of the permissive regulatory regime tolerated by the Andrews Government and declining to bid for more entitlements in the current process is tokenistic at best.

Everybody knows that Woolworths will just buy up more venues down the track. Indeed, since the joint venture with pokies billionaire Bruce Mathieson was formed in 2004, has ALH even sold one of its 300 pokies venues?

As this media release explains, Woolworths has been delivering record profits from its huge pokies empire in recent times. If it is getting out of plastic bags, why not something similar with the pokies?

Countdown to critical Crown Melbourne licence decision

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, a former Gambling Minister who still takes an active interest in the portfolio, has a big decision to make before the Victorian election in terms of what he does to sanction Crown Melbourne and its controlling shareholder for various misdemeanours over the past 5 years.

The Australian’s Margin Call column had the following interesting item on Thursday:

It seems Dan Andrews’ Gaming Minister Marlene Kairouz is sitting on her paperwork. Since mid-May Victoria’s gaming regulator has been conducting a review into Crown Melbourne, the operator and licence holder of the city’s giant casino and the heart of Packer’s empire.

The review is conducted by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation every five years. Margin Call understands the Catherine Myers-led regulator handed its final report to Kairouz on July 2, more than a fortnight ago.

We gather Myers’ review was shown to Crown before it went to the minister. A response from Packer’s management on the report’s findings has been included in the final document that is currently sitting on Kairouz’s desk.

All that’s left is for the Member for Kororoit to flash the green light to the VCGLR, which will then release its good work to the public. Can’t be long now.

The last time the VCGLR stepped up on a regulatory matter involving Crown Resorts we welcomed the record $300,000 fine imposed for tampering with poker machines at its Melbourne property but called on the Victorian Government to take much stronger action as part of its 5 yearly review of the Crown Melbourne licence. Well, that moment is fast approaching.

Australia has a long history of weak gambling regulation so the rare six-figure fine of a major gambling company clearly raised serious questions about the culture and operation at Australia’s biggest casino.

According to the VCGLR statement at the time, the James Packer-controlled company blamed “a small group of Crown staff who did not believe approval was required and who failed to consult internally, or with the VCGLR, to check whether approval was required before commencing the trial”.

What sort of accountability has been demonstrated over the culture at Crown Melbourne where a small group of rogue staff was prepared to illegally use blanking plates on poker machines?

Rather than relying on whistleblowers turned up by Andrew Wilkie, Parliamentary privilege and a regulatory investigation to get to the bottom of these matters, Crown should have self-reported the tampering trial to the VCGLR when it first received customer complaints.

In this situation where Crown has suffered the biggest fine in its 25 year history, you shouldn’t just blame anonymous staff, but instead show some clear accountability amongst senior executives and the directors, most of whom have been personally selected by the controlling shareholder, James Packer.

The Alliance made this submission to the 5 yearly licence review calling for a new licence condition which limits any individual shareholder to no more than 20% of the company.  Rival Australian gambling giants such as Tabcorp and Star Entertainment operate with 10% maximum shareholder restrictions imposed by the NSW and/or Queensland governments.

There have been so many governance issues involving Crown and its controlling shareholder since the last 5 yearly review that The Alliance believes the Victorian Government should use this opportunity under the law to impose a new licence condition which requires James Packer to reduce his voting power over the Crown Melbourne licence to less than 20%. Interestingly, James Packer reportedly resigned from the board of Consolidated Press Holdings, the company which owns the controlling 47% stake in Crown resorts, on June 27, just as Crown was formulating its response to the VCGLR draft report before it was handed to the Minister on July 2.

The Alliance is also hoping the government will impose new licence conditions about disclosure of various gambling harm metrics at Crown which are currently kept secret. The detail of these were outlined in this strong Victorian Inter-Church Gambling Taskforce submission to the Crown licence review. Bizarrely, Crown Melbourne is also the only one of Victoria’s 470 pokies venues which doesn’t disclose, or have disclosed for it, the actual losses on its poker machines each year, which are understood to exceed $400 million a year.

The detailed work on the VCGLR licence review was conducted by Robert Chappell, the former long-standing chief gambling regulator in South Australia before he was axed last year.

Independent observers rate Chappell as a straight shooter who is prepared to take on powerful interests, so we’re presuming he proposed a pretty tough licence review, but whether that got through the VCGLR board, and whether the Premier is keen to go hard, is another matter altogether.

After all, Daniel Andrews has quite a record when it comes to doing favours for James Packer, as this ABC television 7.30 piece from last year outlines in relation to special planning approval for Crown to build the tallest building in the southern hemisphere.

And with the recent Victorian decision to keep sweet with the hotel industry, it doesn’t give us a lot of confidence.

Daniel Andrews rarely gets journalistic questions on gambling matters these days but when ABC state rounds reporter Richard Willingham raised it in early April when Melbourne Football Club divested,  this was the response from Victoria’s Premier:

Well, I would say that individual poker machine entitlements are a matter for those who own those entitlements whether they be a community club, an elite AFL football clubs and beyond clubs into licenced premises  like pubs. It is entirely a matter for those who own that entitlement what the future of that entitlement is. We have given certainty to this industry and that is very important. You have heard me say this before but I make the point again that electronic gaming and gambling in a broader sense is a perfectly legitimate recreational activity except for a small percentage of the community who have really significant problems and our focus has always been in giving them the support and the care that they need and that is not a reflection on the  entire industry and the many many thousands of Victorians who gamble responsibly and get great enjoyment out of it.

The gambling industry would be heartened to hear a leading politician using its framing so precisely. But isn’t the contrast stark indeed with this policy position of the Tasmanian Labor Party under the leadership of Rebecca White.

Come along Tuesday as Mayors unite on steps of Parliament

There will be a “Mayors Unite for Pokies Reform” event on the steps of the Victorian Parliament on Tuesday, July 24, which will mark precisely 4 months until the November 24 election. Proceedings comments at 11am and everyone is welcome as The Alliance launches its Victorian election platform.

Speakers will include Moreland mayor John Kavanagh, Darebin mayor Kim le Cerf, Whittlesea mayor Kris Pavlidis, Wyndham mayor Peter Maynard and acting City of Yarra mayor Misha Coleman, plus representatives from a number of other councils across Victoria.

Each of the five mayors represented, who will each briefly address the media, come from a council that has done something unique in 2017-18 in the gambling space. How’s this for a rollcall of action:

# City of Whittlesea recently launched its “Pokies Play Whittlesea” campaign and has erected 31 billboards across its municipality amidst a suite of measures designed to raise awareness ahead of the November 24 election. Check out this fabulous Whittlesea video and why not sign the electronic petition to back Whittlesea’s campaign.

# City of Moreland had a recent Supreme Court victory over the Glenroy RSL, preventing it from installing 11 new machines in an area already suffering above average rates of gambling harm.

# City of Darebin recently proposed a motion to the MAV State Council calling on Vision Super to investigate divesting its shares in Woolworths if Woolworths doesn’t dramatically change its business to no longer be the world’s biggest suburban poker machine operator which takes $670 million a year from Victorian gamblers alone.

# City of Wyndham recently approved this tough new gambling policy which is one of the strongest in Australia in ensuring council in no way supports or promotes the gambling industry.

# City of Yarra recently passed a trail-blazing resolution (see p13 of these minutes from July 3 council meeting) commissioning a report into the valuations and rates payable by its 8 poker machine venues, potentially opening a new front exploring the issue of whether the gambling industry is failing to pay its fair share of rates.

There really is a lot of innovation in the Victorian local government space with regards to gambling reform, with some more exciting innovations in the pipeline.

Check out this special page on our website tracking the various gambling related motions put up by councils across Australia, including the three most recent efforts by City of Frankston, City of Yarra and City of Brimbank.

The full list of motions provides a smorgasbord of ideas for councillors across Australia who are keen to get into the gambling reform space.

The Alliance is expanding - new Champions for Change coordinator based in Sydney

The last Gambling News included the news that City of Port Phillip councillor Katherine Copsey has been hired as the new Victorian council campaigns co-ordinator. Kat has hit the ground running and now we have some more good news with the hiring of Pepina Belfort as our new Champions for Change coordinator.

Pepi has spent the last two years as the Community Engagement Practitioner for Settlement Services International (SSI) where she designed, implemented and evaluated community development projects such as the community kitchens project. These projects were developed with a collaborative approach, engaging refugees and asylum seekers. Before that, she worked as a case worker for SSI. In these roles, she worked with people who in addition to seeking asylum or as refugees, were also being hurt by NSW poker machines. Through this experience she brings relationships with many community organisations in Western Sydney, including gamblers help service providers.

Pepi has already demonstrated great initiative, compassion and insight into the potential and the challenges of the Champions for Change program which is designed to build and develop a network of people with a lived experience of gambling harm into persuasive advocates for reform with politicians, regulators, the media and community groups.

Pepi starts in Sydney on July 30 and will further boost The Alliance’s capacity to build the case for meaningful gambling reform in the world’s most gambling harmed country which is now suffering from an enormous $25 billion a year in annual gambling losses.

A wide range of interesting media articles and interviews on gambling

Finally, we’ve been busily updating our web page linking to interesting media on gambling issues from around the world. Here are 20 links we recommend for reading or listening:

Why can't conservative Australian MPs write like this British peer?
The House Magazine, 19 July, 2018

Interview with Allison Keogh on 702 ABC Sydney (starts 13 mins in)
ABC radio, 19 July, 2018  

Cr Pat Daley lines us team for Dee Why RSL board tilt, calls out Liberal conflicts
Sydney Morning Herald, 19 July, 2018

Collingwood pokies sale signals change in attitudes
ABC radio's AM program, 18 July, 2018

Comprehensive BBC newsround wrap on all things British gambling
BBC, 18 July, 2018

Morally bankrupt Penrith RSL offers kids bingo
Daily Mail Australia, 18 July, 2018

Pressure on Labor to quit pokies empire
Sky News, 18 July, 2018

Pubs to get greater share of pokies as Collingwood exits
The Age, 18 July, 2018

Dee Why board tilt as Clubs NSW says it's all about the money, not the harm
The Manly Daily, 17 July, 2018

Great work by The Guardian counting all the World Cup gambling ads
Guardian UK, 15 July, 2018

Tim Costello discusses world record NSW pokies losses
2GB, Sunday Nights with Bill Crews, 15 July, 2018

Did the diggers die so the RSL could cause this misery?
Sydney Morning Herald, 14 July, 2018

A Current Affair covers the tragic death of Gary Van Duinen
Nine Network, 13 July, 2018

City of Whittlesea powers ahead with campaign against pokies harm
Neos Kosmos, 13 July, 2018

NSW pokies losses set to soar through $7 billion
Sydney Morning Herald, 13 July, 2018

Giant NSW pokies clubs fined after SBS News investigation
SBS, 12 July, 2018

How casinos are designed to keep you gambling, 11 July, 2018

Interview with Allison Keogh on NSW pokies saturation
2SER, 11 July, 2018

Peter FitzSimons on the disgraceful NSW pokies machine
Sydney Morning Herald, 9 July, 2018

How many jobs does the pokies industry create?
RMIT ABC Fact Check, 9 July, 2018

UK families impacted by gambling suicides speak out
Daily Mail, 25 June, 2018

That’s all for now. We’ll be back with another Gambling News update within a fortnight.

Meanwhile, if you’d like to become a financial supporter of The Alliance as we battle to reduce world record levels of gambling harm in Australia, click here.

Until next time.

Do ya best,
Stephen Mayne
Editor of Gambling News
Feedback to [email protected],  0412 106 241 or DM tweet to @maynereport