Politician Blasts UK Gambling Commission Imposed Affordability Checks
Politicians and gambling industry professionals are criticizing the stringent affordability checks the Gambling Commission is trying to enforce
LONDON, U.K. (January 17, 2023) — According to local media reports one parliamentary representative harshly criticized the betting industry regulatory body for forcing bookmakers to ask for customers’ private financial information to allow them to gamble.
Shipley MP Opined the Gambling Commission Is Out of Control
Customers are currently experiencing excessive and intrusive examinations of their financial situation and sources of funds by bookmakers, as the government continues to delay the release of its white paper regarding the reevaluation of the 2005 Gambling Act. According to The Racing Post, the white paper was part of the Conservative Party’s campaign promise in 2019.
As the document has yet to be released, the UK Gambling Commission has been giving instructions to betting companies. However, Philip Davies, who is a Conservative Member of Parliament for the Shipley constituency, feels that the regulator is running rampant.
Davies stated that the notion that bookmakers, the Gambling Commission, or the government have the power to decide how much money an individual can afford to gamble should be abandoned. The gambler is the only one who knows how much money they can use on gambling, yet the personal responsibility has been fully taken away.
Davies further suggested that each gambler should have to enter how much they are willing to lose each month or each year and the operators should be held accountable for ensuring they do not exceed that. He also said that it is clear that the Gambling Commission, whose leaders know nothing about gambling, is out of control and the white paper must curb their extreme measures. Davies emphasized that it is time people, including the Gambling Commission, listened to the gamblers.
The UK Gambling Commission Does Not Understand Gamblers
According to Harry Findlay, a professional gambler and co-owner of the horse racing champion Denman, the Gambling Commission has a severe lack of understanding regarding betting and how individuals approach gambling.
Findlay expressed concern that the unpredictable nature of who is subject to an affordability check, and when, has the potential to cause harm to those who engage in sports betting such as horse racing or greyhound racing.
Findlay also stated that the Gambling Commission does not get gamblers and is imposing regulations without a proper understanding of their motivation and wishes. He also mentioned that he believes he and another professional gambler, Neil Channing, could challenge the Commission’s understanding of the mentality of a gambler if given the opportunity.
Another professional who joined the discussion, Charlie Parker, the leader of the Thoroughbred Group and head of the Racehorse Owners Association, has stated that he finds the inspections on gamblers’ finances peculiar.
However, Parker also stated that the government had given positive feedback about the white paper. He elaborated that it appears that the government’s plan is less alarming compared to the actions currently taken by the Gambling Commission.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Silvia Pavlof