March is Problem Gambling Awareness Month, and as Chair of the NYS Senate Racing, Gaming, and Wagering Committee, Senator Joe Addabbo recognizes the importance of providing education and resources for gambling addiction so those who need help, are able to obtain it.
The NYS Senate passed legislation (S.4207), sponsored by Senator Addabbo, requiring the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services to develop a problem gambling education program that all individuals, prior to being removed from any self-exclusion list, must complete.
Many gaming facilities nationwide use self-exclusion lists to encourage responsible gaming. In New York, gaming facilities are required to offer individuals the ability to voluntarily place themselves on a self-exclusion list, which will prevent them from entering, placing a wager, or collecting winnings from a gambling facility. In addition, if an individual is seen on the premises of a facility, they may be escorted off the casino’s property.
“Problem Gambling Awareness Month serves as a reminder that gambling addiction is real and requires effective resources to educate, support, and treat individuals,” Addabbo said. “As the prospect of legalizing mobile sports betting appears closer than ever, we remain focused on raising public awareness about problem gambling and its negative effects. This legislation will help raise awareness while enhancing self-exclusion services for individuals seeking to confront their issues with problem gambling.”
For those seeking help with problem gaming, the New York State Gaming Commission offers many Responsible Gaming Resources on their website (https://www.ny.gov/programs/responsible-gaming), or they can call 1-877-8HOPE-NY for addiction support and referral services, or they can text HOPENY(467369).
After passing the Senate, the bill moves to the Assembly Alcohol and Drug Abuse Committee for consideration.