Addabbo Lauds Problem Gambling PSA

Addabbo Lauds Problem Gambling PSA

Photo Courtesy of the State Gaming Commission

The State Gaming Commission’s new web page provides users with confidential self-assessment tools and identifies additional resources that can help gamblers recognize the signs of gambling addiction.

By Michael V. Cusenza

State Sen. Joe Addabbo, Jr. (D-Howard Beach) this week continued his campaign to bring mobile sports wagering to New York by publically praising the State Gaming Commission for the special recognition it recently received from the North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries for its 30-second “Falls Into Place” Public Service Announcement on problem gambling.

The radio PSA was recognized for providing individuals who have lost control of their gambling with a hopeful message of how a changed mindset can lead to changed habits, according to the Gaming Commission.

“The competition across jurisdictions to produce groundbreaking responsible gaming messaging is fierce,” Commission Executive Director Robert Williams said. “We are honored to be named among the best in the industry.”

Addabbo said the panel “did a wonderful job on their radio PSA about problem-gaming, offering hope to those who have lost control of their gaming to where it is negatively affecting their lives. Aside from just providing a hopeful message, the PSA goes further and gives listeners two follow-up options in a website to obtain help with problem gaming, and a phone number to call in order to address any issues they may be having with gaming.”

The first option is the Commission’s new web page, which provides users with confidential self-assessment tools and identifies additional resources that can help gamblers recognize the signs of gambling addiction. And, for those in need of immediate help, the PSA encourages listeners to access the (877) 8-HOPENY addictions referral helpline administered by the State office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services.

Addabbo has been leading the charge to pass legislation that would allow mobile sports betting in the Empire State, which would reap the benefits of tens of millions of dollars in revenue for educational funding. However, as the Queens lawmaker indicated this week, promoting gaming and pushing for mobile sports betting goes hand-in-hand with raising awareness about problem-gambling and funding problem-gambling programs.

“We all know gaming and betting on sports can be a fun pastime and can even lead to some financial gains, but when it becomes an obsession and begins affecting players’ lives, it becomes a problem,” said Addabbo, chairman of the Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering. “I will make sure that if we bring mobile sports wagering to New York, we will bring problem-gambling programs with it to assist those who already have problem gaming issues, help identify the signs of problem gaming, and ways to prevent problem gambling from hurting people.”

Part of Addabbo’s Senate bill to legalize mobile wagering looks to amend section 1367 of the Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Breeding Law, by requiring the State Gaming Commission to promulgate rules mandating that operators implement responsible gaming programs, including programs to address potential problem-gambling for individuals under the age of 30. The measure also provides a new funding source to administer problematic-gaming programs.


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