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Betting shops 10 times more likely in poorer towns

26 August 2021
Gaming machines in row betting shop 3 2

New research suggests a fifth of betting shops are to be found in poorer areas, raising concerns about exploitation and gambling related harms.

Glasgow, Middlesbrough, London and Liverpool had the highest number of betting shops per capita.

The study by the University of Bristol found betting shops are 10 times more likely to be found in more economically deprived communities.

This has raised alarm for charities seeking to help people with a gambling addiction.

“Predatory gambling companies target the poor and the young. We know the tragic cost of this targeting - at least one death per day,” Ms Ritchie from the charity Gambling With Lives told the BBC.

According to the Betting and Gaming Service, betting shops make a huge economic contribution to the country.

But Jamie Evans, senior research associate at Bristol Uni said:

“While gambling premises may provide jobs, we know that gambling can lead to a wide variety of financial, social and health problems, with problem gambling affecting not just the gambler themselves but many of those closest to them as well.”
Jamie Evans Senior Research Associate, University of Bristol

The UK Government is currently conducting a review of the 2005 Gambling Act and launched a consultation earlier this year.

CARE made a detailed submission, raising a number of concerns with the existing legislation and urging the Government to implement reforms to existing laws.

Earlier this month, CARE also released research highlighting the prevalence of gambling sponsorship in the Premier League and across football in general.

Chief Communications Officer James Mildred went on GB News to explain what needs to happen.

CARE's James Mildred speaks to GB News about gambling and football

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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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