SELF-EXCLUSIONS: A DEEPER ANALYSIS B Presentation at GRAF
SELF-EXCLUSIONS: A DEEPER ANALYSIS B Presentation at GRAF 29 August 2018 Presenter: Mr Bryan Arumugam 1 The legal modes of gambling in SA In South Africa, four modes of gambling are legal, namely casinos (land-based), bingo (both traditional and electronic), limited payout machines (LPMs) and betting on horse racing and sporting events Gambling under these modes, using licensed operators, is regulated
Any gambling activity that does not fall under one of these four, or is one of the four but not offered by a licensed operator, is illegal Lotteries do not fall under the gambling industry as it is regulated under the Lotteries Act, 1997 (Act 57 of 1997) as amended by the Lotteries Amendment Act, 2013 (No 32 of 2013), by the National Lotteries Commission (NLC) The National Gambling Board (NGB) ensures compliance with the National Gambling Act, 2004 (Act 7 of 2004) read with its corresponding regulations
Both the NLC and NGB are implementing agencies of the national Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) 2 Social benefits of gambling Gambling is offered as a form of recreation and entertainment The ideal gambler only gambles with money that he / she can afford to lose and never see again Licensed operators offer corporate social programmes giving back to the community The legal gambling industry is well-regulated to protect gamblers Access to national and provincial regulators for assistance Education and information through awareness programs / roadshows Problem gambling protection, free counselling, access to rehabilitation programmes and access to an exclusions register. 3 What is self-exclusion?
Self-exclusion is an extreme form of pre-commitment, in which gamblers who believe that they have a problem can voluntarily bar themselves from entering gambling venues to prevent them from gambling. Under a formal self-exclusion program, the individual agrees that the operators and / or regulators authorise gaming staff to deny them access to the venue. This agreement places the responsibility on the individual as they risk removal for breaches and can possibly be charged with trespassing. 4 Addictive gamblers People who experience any five of the following symptoms may be classified as addictive gamblers: Tolerance -- the person is not satisfied with the regular amount of gambling experiences ,and needs more and more additional gambling Preoccupation -- the person often thinks about gambling and dreams of spending all spare time gambling Withdrawal -- the person becomes irritable and short-tempered when he /
she tries to quit or reduce the amount of gambling experiences Chasing -- the person gambles more hoping to compensate for losses and win more money 5 Addictive gamblers Escape -- the person gambles to escape the problems in personal and social life Loss of control -- the person cannot control amount of gambling Lying -- the person tries to hide the passion for gambling Illegal acts -- the person violates the law in order to obtain money for gambling Bailout -- the person seeks financial help at the third party, such as family, friends or pawn shops, to compensate for the losses and continue gambling. Risked significant relationship -- the person gambles despite the risk of losing any significant relationships 6
Roles and responsibilities Avoid the blame game problem is not addressed Taking responsibility enables roles to be defined and solutions to be identified Circles of influence means different levels of individuals or groups that are influenced by or are influencing something. Role players: o Policy makers (government) o Regulators o The local and general community of the gambler o
Operators o The gamblers family o The gambler 7 Roles and responsibilities Policy makers need to make sure there are laws that make sure the addicted gambler is protected. Regulators ensure that the law is implemented in a manner that prevents the gambler being taken advantage of due to his/her condition. The community of the gambler is responsible to provide supporting groups and educational support.
The operator is responsible to provide preventive information and may help to avoid reaching critical levels of addiction. The gamblers family is responsible to identify the problem in time and actively try to stop it from growing beyond / without control. The gambler himself is responsible to try and avoid reaching an addictive level, and if reached, to get help. 8 National Gambling Act, 2004 Section 14 Excluded persons: A person who wishes to be prevented from engaging in any gambling activity may register as an excluded person by submitting a notice to that effect in the prescribed manner and form. A person who registered as an excluded person in terms of subsection (1) may submit a notice in the prescribed manner and form to cancel that registration at any time. Provision is also made for application to Court by a family member to have a problem gambler excluded. Requires the NGB to establish and maintain a national register of
excluded persons and to make the information in the register continuously available to each provincial licensing authority and licensed operator. 9 National Gambling Act, 2004 Section 14 Excluded persons: A licensed operator must not knowingly permit an excluded person to enter or remain in a designated area within gambling premises, operate a gambling machine or gambling device or engage in social gambling or a restricted gambling activity within those premises. A licensed operator must make available at all of its licensed premises the prescribed form to be used by a person wishing to register as an excluded person. 10 National Gambling Act, 2004 Section 16 - Enforceability of gambling debts and forfeiture of
unlawful winnings: A debt incurred by an excluded person (winnings), is un-enforceable in law. A licensed operator must not knowingly pay any winnings from a gambling activity to an excluded person. Such operator who is prevented from paying said winnings must remit those winnings to the NGB. Upon receiving such winnings, the NGB must investigate the circumstances of the relevant gambling activity, and either (a) deliver the winnings to the person who won them, if the NGB is satisfied that the gambling activity was lawful, and the winner was not anexcluded person at the time of the activity; or (b) apply to the High Court for an order declaring the winnings forfeit to the State. 11 National Gambling Regulations, 2004 Regulation 2 - Excluded persons: The national register of excluded persons shall contain at least the following information in respect of each excluded person
(a) full registered names, including other names used and or known by; (b) date of birth; (c) identity number or passport number; (d) residential address; (e) telephone and cellular numbers, as applicable; (f) e-mail address, if applicable; (g) gender; (h) height; (i) weight; (j) hair colour; (k) eye colour, and (l) visible distinguishing marks. 12 National Gambling Regulations, 2004 Regulation 2 - Excluded persons: Describes the Notice to register as an excluded person, and requires a passport size colour photograph of that person.
Sets out the form if an excluded person wants to cancel registration as an excluded person. Documentary proof that the excluded person has complied with all requirements of any rehabilitation programme must be provided. A licensed operator must take the following measures to determine whether a person is an excluded person: (a) to place a member of staff at each entrance to any designated area, to monitor and control the entry of persons into the designated area; and (b) to provide the member of staff with sufficient prior access to the information maintained by the NGB to enable reasonable identification of excluded persons. 13 National Responsible Gambling Programme The National Responsible Gambling Programme NRGP supports the self-exclusion intervention as stipulated in the legislation. The NRGP supervised by the South African Responsible Gambling
Foundation (SARGF) in co-operation with the gambling industry operators and governmental regulators. The NRGP is a public-private sector initiative and is funded by a contribution of 0.1% of Gross Gambling Revenue (GGR). The role that the NRGP plays in this programme is Counselling and Support for the excluded individuals and their immediate family members. It is a legislated programme where a player may wish to exclude him/herself from gambling activities. In terms of the legislation anyone can apply for exclusion. An individual that is excluded from gambling activities cannot take part in any gambling activity for a prescribed period. During this period of exclusion, the NRGP offers Counselling to the excluded individual. 14 What does this tell us? Self-exclusions is a recognized and encouraged mechanism to assist problem gamblers The South African regulatory environment includes treatment and counselling for excluded persons
Problem gamblers can self exclude by approaching operators or any of the regulators Self exclusion applies to all modes of gambling in SA The legal regulatory regime very thoroughly details how self exclusion applies Self exclusion regulations clearly outline the governments intention to protect gamblers from the ill effects of problem gambling. The NGA 15 Gambling prevalence - 2017 Research conducted by the NGB in 2017: Gamblers : 30.6% of South Africans
Places reliance on the gambler being able and willing to admitting to having a real or potential gambling problem Admission of an addiction is much harder, as in most cases, there isnt self-awareness that one has a problem Great reliance placed on casino operators to enforce compliance based on assumption that the largest gambling activity is at casinos (not supported by research) Assumption that technology can easily advance enforcement (e.g. biometric face recognition) Staff / technological controls not easily available to small operators like in LPM industry Research lotteries not covered by gambling regulations self exclusions dont include lotteries 18 Challenges Use of cash gamblers are difficult to monitor or trace when using cash as the gambling is undetectable until the gambler wins a significant amount of money
Self exclusion will automatically exclude a person from all legal gambling modes and venues (in theory) this may discourage the gambler from applying for an exclusion No provision for exclusion from a specific venue (e.g. the casino nearest to the gambler) but not from others discourages gambler from excluding himself / herself The regulations require information from the punter that may not be easy to obtain practically by operator (e.g. height, weight) Challenges with implementation date from the moment that a person applies to be excluded No protection from illegal gambling eg. dice, fafi, online (casino) gambling 19 Conclusion As described at the outset, it is much easier to deal with self regulation on paper than in reality the NGA and Regulations are very thorough, and well intentioned, however there are practical considerations that make implementation quite difficult Advancements in technology may point us towards cashless gambling
this could provide the level of control over gamblers that the regulations seek Education and awareness on responsible gambling, and the mechanisms available for problem gamblers, should be increased Must not punish operators with onerous compliance requirements that will go against the intention of self exclusion Ultimately, self exclusion is about the individual. 20 21 QUESTIONS AND COMMENTS For further information, clarity or comments, please contact: Mr Bryan Arumugam Senior Manager: Corporate Governance Tel. 0100033487 National: Web: www.ngb.org.za Address: 420 Witch-Hazel Avenue, Eco-Glades 2, Block C, Eco-Park, Centurion, 0144
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