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Gambling Commission welcomes new local public health approach

28 January 2020

The Gambling Commission has welcomed the launch of a new local public health pathfinder to reduce gambling harms in the North West of England.

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) will deliver a programme of work which underpins the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms, supported by funding approved by the Gambling Commission. Ten local authorities will work together to increase support for those experiencing harm, improve prevention programmes across the region, collect evidence of the impact of interventions and share best practice as part of a gambling harm reduction group.

Bill Moyes, chairman of the Gambling Commission, who delivered opening remarks at the launch event today, said: “The programme that councils and the Combined Authority across Greater Manchester are launching today is ambitious and very welcome.

“The adoption of a well-planned public health approach to tackling gambling harms across Greater Manchester is exactly what the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms was designed to stimulate. I and my colleagues at the Gambling Commission are pleased that authorities in Greater Manchester have taken this initiative and we hope it will be replicated elsewhere.

“Not only will the approach focus collaborative effort to reduce gambling harms across a wide geographic footprint, it will also deliver evaluation and shared learnings so that other organisations can build on the developments in the North West.  

“We continue to work to support all initiatives which lead the way for local public health approaches to reduce gambling harms and health inequalities across Great Britain. This approach is key to delivering change.” 

Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham said: “This funding will be used to strengthen the treatment and education around gambling available throughout Greater Manchester, and support a broad range of initiatives to better understand gambling harm.

“With the vast number of online betting sites and the fact that gambling is now so prevalent in sports advertising and sponsorship, we don’t want to be playing catch-up when it comes to recognising and addressing the negative effects that it can have.

“We need to have a frank and constructive conversation about the harm that can be caused by gambling, and work together with local authorities and partners in all areas of our city-region to reduce its impact and support those who need our help.”

Today, the Gambling Commission has also published a list of organisations that have received regulatory settlements over the last year.