Memorandum submitted by GamCare
GamCare, a registered charity, has become the
leading authority on the provision of information, advice and
practical help in addressing the social impact of gambling in
the UK. We strive to develop strategies that will:
Improve the understanding of
the social impact of gambling;
Promote a responsible approach
to gambling; and
Address the needs of those adversely
affected by a gambling dependency.
GamCare operates the UK telephone helpline for
anyone affected by a gambling problem as well as a network of
regional counselling centres.
GamCare works closely with the Government, regulators
and industry, promoting social responsibility and player protection
in an attempt to minimise the potential for harm.
Contrary to media suggestion GamCare has not
received a significant number of calls to the national telephone
helpline relating to problematic participation in TV quiz games.
This does not mean that individuals are not experiencing difficulty
as a result of their participation, many factors can influence
whether or not calls will be made to the helpline.
GamCare maintains the position that TV quiz
shows whilst possibly falling into a legislative "grey"
area do offer a gaming experience to the public and as such should
be operated in a responsible manner.
GamCare would be keen to see the following implemented
by anyone operating TV quiz games in an attempt to minimise the
potential for harm and to ensure that anyone who does develop
a problem can access help:
Clear indication of the cost
Statement of the importance
of only spending money one can afford to lose;
Recommendation that individuals
set themselves a limit both in relation to money and time spent
Fair messages identifying the
likelihood of a call being successful;
Not encouraging the "one
more call" or "maybe next time" belief that continued
calling will necessarily result in success;
Providing a clear statement
of the age restriction on participation; and
Identifying sources of help
and advice (GamCare helpline and/or website) for those people
who are concerned about their own or somebody else's participation.
Further information on GamCare and its services
can be found at www.gamcare.org.uk
16 November 2006