New initiative to help tackle problem gambling

10 May 2018

Gaming machines in all South Australian pubs and clubs have been connected to a new automated system that will help staff identify patrons who may be at risk of harm from gambling.

The new initiative, approved by the Board of the Independent Gambling Authority, has seen poker machines hooked up to an automated risk monitoring system.

The system monitors the activity on any given machine, alerting venue staff when patrons have reached a certain threshold of play, based on how long they have been at the machine, or how much they have spent.

The system will complement existing measures aimed at addressing problem gambling.

Venue staff are already required to undertake training to identify and interact with potential problem gamblers.

This system will provide another means of identifying people who may be at risk of harm from gambling and need referral to support services or other forms of intervention.

The Gaming Machines Act 1992 requires that by 31 December 2018, all gaming machines must be connected to an automated risk monitoring system approved by the Authority.

The application for approval of the system was lodged by the Independent Gaming Corporation Ltd, the holder of the gaming machine monitoring licence, with the assistance of industry bodies, Australian Hotels Association SA and Clubs SA.

The system has been trialled in venues over several months and officially commenced last week.

Industry bodies have been working with venue managers across the state to ensure they understood how the system would operate, and the requirement for staff to respond once a certain threshold had been detected by the monitoring system.

The Authority is pleased the system has been implemented in South Australian pubs and clubs well ahead of the legislated commencement date, and thanks the Australian Hotels Association SA and Clubs SA for their support in achieving this outcome.

Anyone affected by gambling can call the Gambling Helpline on 1800 858 858 or visit gamblinghelponline.org.au for more services and information.

The Authority offers a free, confidential barring service for all forms of gambling in South Australia. The Authority can make barring orders for all types of gambling products across multiple venues.

Information about barring orders is available on the Authority website at www.iga.sa.gov.au or call the Authority direct on (08) 8226 7233.