Australian Government to Consider the Report of Online Gambling Inquiry
CANBERRA, ACT, Australia (June 28, 2023) — The Labor Government has received the final report of the inquiry into online gambling and its impacts on those experiencing gambling harm by the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs.
The Government welcomes the report and will now consider the Committee’s 31 recommendations.
The Committee established the inquiry on 15 September 2022, following a referral from the Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth.
The inquiry received 161 submissions, 26 exhibits and held 13 public hearings.
The Committee has undertaken a comprehensive review of the evidence around online gambling harms, including whether current laws, regulations, consumer protections, education and support programs are fit-for-purpose.
Reforms taken forward from the inquiry will complement work the Albanese Government has already put in place to reduce gambling harms, including committing to ban credit cards for online wagering, progressing classification reform to protect children from simulated gambling in computer games, and implementing new evidence-based taglines to replace ‘gamble responsibly’ that convey the risks and potential harm from online wagering.
The Government will soon launch BetStop, the national self-exclusion register, which is the tenth and final element of the National Consumer Protection Framework to be implemented.
Australians spend the most in the world, per capita, on legal forms of gambling, losing $25 billion every year. Australians also lose the most money to online gambling, per capita, in the world.
Gambling poses serious risks to Australians’ physical and mental health. The participation of Australians in online gambling increased from 12.6 per cent in 2010 to 30.7 per cent in 2019.
Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth said the Government takes seriously our responsibilities around online wagering and gambling advertising
“It’s why earlier this year I convened the first meeting of gambling ministers from the Commonwealth, states and territories since 2017,” Minister Rishworth said.
“We are working together to implement the remaining measures of the National Consumer Protection Framework and already we have implemented activity statements, staff training and new evidence-based taglines.
“I thank the House of Representatives Committee and its members, including Chair Peta Murphy, for their work, which provides an important evidence-base for future action. We will consider all recommendations of the inquiry and work closely with states and territories on what comes next.”
Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland said the Government is committed to ensuring that online gambling occurs within a robust legislative framework with strong consumer protections.
“This report provides a comprehensive review of online gambling, and outlines options to reduce gambling harms in Australia. I thank the Committee for its work, and the many Australians with lived experiences, advocates and industry groups who participated in this process,” Minister Rowland said.
“The Government will now consider the report and its recommendations in full, and in consultation with key stakeholders, before outlining proposed reforms.”
For more information on the Committee’s report visit the Australian Parliament House website.
Information on the National Consumer Protection Framework can be found on the Department of Social Services website.
Wednesday 28 June 2023