Personal delivery: bringing player education initiatives to life at CGCs

promo-gamesense-info.jpg.scale.208x118BCLC’s community gaming centres (CGCs) have not been receiving the level of personal responsible gambling support over the years as their big brother casino properties. But we’re working to change that. Continue reading

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What’s an RG check?

RG Check Accredited LogoThis was the question asked recently by reporter Mike Howell of the Vancouver Courier when news reports about the planned relocation of the Edgewater Casino mentioned the program in answer to concerns about the management of problem gambling.

So what is it exactly?

Well, the “RG” in RG Check stands for Responsible Gambling.  And RG Check is a program devised by the Toronto-based Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) to assess the presence and effectiveness of responsible gambling programs within gaming venues like BC’s casinos and community gaming centres.  The RGC’s Centre for the Advancement of Best Practices has developed a set of eight standards (called the RG Index) based on established, evidence-based best practices, or in the absence of evidence, with expert opinion based on existing literature, experience, or emerging research. Continue reading

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The problem with problem gambling stats

“Problem gambling in B.C. more than doubled in 5 years”   CBC Online

“B.C. revenue increases as problem gambling more than doubles”  Vancouver Sun

“B.C.’s problem gamblers double”  (Victoria) Times Colonist

“Problem gamblers on the rise in B.C.”  The (Kelowna) Daily Courier

Screen Shot 2013-11-22 at 8.48.14 AMThe headlines on October 17th were certainly worrisome.  But to me they revealed the challenge that comes from trying to boil down complex data and analysis to a level understandable or relevant to the general public.

The stories were based on a recent report by BC’s provincial health officer that included reference to two problem gambling prevalence studies released by the Province of British Columbia in March 2003 and January 2007. Both studies, undertaken by a respected international research firm, used an internationally recognized measurement tool (the Canadian Problem Gambling Index or CPGI) to assess the level of problem gambling among the adult population in British Columbia.

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BCLC recognized for holiday campaign “Joy to give, but not to kids”

Cool Sign 848x480The U.S.-based National Council on Problem Gambling together with McGill University’s International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors have worked for the past couple of years encouraging lottery organizations like BCLC to warn parents about the risk of giving lottery products to young people as Christmas gifts. Continue reading

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CMA Journal criticizes hospital lotteries used as fundraisers

$tethescopeA recent edition of the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) includes an editorial by editor-in-chief Dr. John Fletcher critical of charitable lotteries organized by/for hospitals as major fundraisers.  This of course prompted all kinds of headlines across Canada, including: “Hospital lotteries ‘should do no harm’” (Vancouver Sun), “Hospital lotteries may harm gamblers” (Globe and Mail), and “Medical journal questions morals of hospital lotteries” (Victoria Times Colonist).

 I should point out that neither I nor BCLC are associated in any way with the hospital lotteries that occur in British Columbia.  They operate under license from the Gaming Policy & Enforcement Branch which is exclusively responsible for their regulation and oversight.

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