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Kentucky Lottery Gift Responsibly Effort Praised

November 28, 2021 | Government

Please contact KYCPG Executive Director Mike Stone for further information.

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (November 24, 2021) — The Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling (KYCPG) praises the Kentucky Lottery’s participation in the 2021 Gift Responsibly Campaign, which is a world-wide effort to raise awareness of potential gateways to a gambling problem or addiction.

“The Kentucky Lottery’s participation in the Gift Responsibly Campaign demonstrates its commitment to corporate social responsibility,” KYCPG Executive Director Michael R. Stone said.

“The campaign seeks to raise awareness of the risks associated with adults giving lottery tickets and other gambling-themed gifts (such as miniature casino games or poker chips) to children as gifts during the holidays, or any other time of year. Research clearly links early exposure to and participation in gambling with future gambling problems and other risky behaviors. The message is simple: lottery tickets are appropriate gifts for adults only.”

Stone points out the Kentucky Lottery’s participation in the Gift Responsibly Campaign continues its pioneering efforts to promote responsible gambling and awareness among youth about the potential harms on uncontrolled gambling. More than 20 years ago, the Kentucky Lottery introduced the “Not 18? No Way; No Play!” message. It emphasized the legal age to purchase a lottery ticket in Kentucky is 18. For the past 15 years, the Kentucky Lottery has partnered with KYCPG to promote use of the free addiction awareness curriculum, “Choices, There Always Is a Right One” in Kentucky middle and high schools. The curriculum addresses several forms of addiction awareness, including gambling, with vignettes from youth about their experiences. (For more information on “Choices” or to order the curriculum, please contact KYCPG at kmstone1951@gmail.com.)

“The Kentucky Lottery is an industry leader in promoting responsible gambling,” Stone emphasized. “It has gone beyond simple taglines on commercials to put in place effective responsible gambling measures.”

KYCPG recognizes that lottery tickets consistently are used as last-minute gifts or stocking stuffers. The National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) and the International Center for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors at Montreal’s McGill University, organizers of the Gift Responsibly Campaign, suggest other possible gift ideas such as puzzles or craft kits, or even gift cards or money.

“The research is clear that early gambling experiences by children could potentially lead to problem gambling issues later in life,” said Kentucky Lottery President and CEO Mary Harville. “As one of the first lottery organizations to participate in the Gift Responsibly program years ago, we’ve always taken the opportunity at this time of year to remind adults that it’s just not a good idea to give kids lottery tickets. We encourage adults to do something else to help mark the occasion.”

KYCPG reminds everyone that if they think their gambling may becoming a problem, a basic self-test is available at www.kygamblinghelp.org. Individuals can text or speak to a trained telephone counselor at 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-425-2537). The counselors can provide more information on problem and addicted gambling, or referrals to certified gambler counselors or Gamblers’ Anonymous.

Information on Youth Gambling from NCPG:

  • Many young people report their first gambling experience occurs around 9-11 years of age.
  • More and more youth are exposed to the availability and accessibility of many forms of gambling at even younger ages and are tempted by the pressures to participate.
  • Youth problem gambling is a growing public health concern. Even though gambling activities are legally restricted to adults, and laws for purchase, play and redemption vary by state, there is clear evidence that underage youth continue to actively participate in gambling.
  • Nationally, 4-6 percent of adolescents presently have a serious problem with gambling.
  • Nationally, 10-14 percent of adolescents are at risk of developing a problem with gambling.
  • White male adolescents gamble more frequently than females. Female adolescents are more actively involved in lottery play.

For information on problem gambling awareness and self-assessment, please visit www.kygamblinghelp.org. For more information on KYCPG or on problem gambling issues, visit: www.kycpg.org.

The Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling is a non-profit corporation whose mission is to increase awareness of problem gambling, promote prevention and research, and advocate for the availability of treatment. KYCPG is supported by memberships and donations. Corporate members include Churchill Downs, Inc; Ellis Park; Keeneland Race Course; Kentucky Downs; The Red Mile; The Kentucky Lottery Corporation; IGT; KRM Wagering; Caesars Southern Indiana; Hollywood Casino Hotel; and Tropicana Casino.

Members of the Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling Board of Directors are President, Director of Education and NCPG Representative RonSonLyn Clark, Psy.D., Owensboro; Treasurer Mike Townsend, Crestwood; Secretary Sara Westerman, Crestwood; Professional Adviser Curtis L. Barrett, Ph.D., Prospect; John Arnett, Florence; Jim Blackerby, Lexington; Dennis Boyd, Louisville; Scott Hunt, Ph.D., Richmond; Gerrimy Keiffer, Owensboro; Patrick Malarkey, Louisville; and Chip Polston, Louisville.

SOURCE: The Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling.

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