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Gambling

Bring an end to relationship between gambling firms and sports clubs, urges MP

20 March 2020

The Labour MP Carolyn Harris has called on the Government to take immediate action to bring an end to the troubling relationship between sports clubs and the gambling industry.

Ms Harris was speaking during an Adjournment Debate in the House of Commons late yesterday evening.

During a wide-ranging speech, she utilised clear evidence which demonstrates how tightly linked the betting industry and sports like football have become.

Half of all premier league shirts are emblazoned with gambling company logos. In the Championship, 17 out of 24 clubs have gambling sponsors.

According to Professor Jim Orford, gambling logos are on the screen for 70% of the time during Match of the Day programmes.

There are big concerns around the impact of gambling advertising on children and young people. It is already estimated that as many as 55,000 11-16 year olds are problem gamblers.

Ms Harris called on the betting industry to do more. The recent whistle-to-whistle ban is a step in the right direction, but betting firms should extend the ban to shirt, league and digital advertising around the football pitch.

The Government has promised a review of the 2005 Gambling Act. During the debate, the Minister was pressed on the need to ensure the review is as comprehensive as possible.

CARE stands ready to engage with the review whenever it is launched. It is vital that our laws are reformed to prioritise the protection of people from gambling related harms. There are a range of measures that could be introduced to help ensure this happens and we will continue to make the case for these reforms in Parliament and in the public square.

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Gambling

While for some, gambling is just harmless fun, for a significant minority it causes genuine devastation. Our vision is to see laws passed that will help protect vulnerable problem gamblers.

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