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Time for policies on gambling to benefit health – not the gambling industry

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Time for policies on gambling to benefit health – not the gambling industry. Authors: Samantha L. Thomas, Gemma Crawford, Mike Daube, Hannah Pitt, Jonathan Hallett, Simone McCarthy, Louise Francis, Melinda Edmunds (2023). Published in Health Promotion Journal of Australia.


It has been more than a decade since the last HPJA editorial calling for action on gambling.1 Since then, the industry has exponentially expanded its reach into new markets and media. With this increased focus comes an opportunity for action to mitigate the health and social impacts of the industry’s tactics and harmful products. The current Australian federal parliamentary inquiry into online gambling and its impact for those experiencing gambling harm,2 can provide a pathway to transformational reform of the Australian commercial gambling industry. Recent Royal Commissions and Inquiries into casinos in Australia,3-5 and a New South Wales (NSW) Crime Commission report into money laundering through poker machines in community clubs and pubs,6 have also sparked national debate about the gambling industry’s adverse behaviour. They have also demonstrated how “harmful industries and complacent and complicit governments can create doubt and frame the public debate with devastating consequences” for community health and wellbeing.7 In this editorial, we argue that it is time for comprehensive governmental action to protect the Australian community from being harmed by the commercial gambling industry and its products.

Read the full open access article here.

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