In the wake of a government announcement about a continuing ban on new casinos, an Australian anti-gambling campaigner says New Zealand needs to act fast on limiting a faster-growing threat.
Internet gambling has few controls, can be accessed by almost anyoneis growing fast.
“You need to nip it in the bud because otherwise New Zealand will face a tidal wave of problem gambling, because it’s accessible, it’s interactive,they’re all the factors that will make gambling addiction skyrocket,” campaigner Nick Xenophon says.”
Australia’s Senate has just legislated against Internet gambling – their casinos cannot go on-line, but some developing nations see Internet casinos as a money spinner.
“We know that it’s grown exponentially in a number of jurisdictions, in third world countries, in places like the Bahamas where they’re looking at expanded online gambling,” Xenophon says.
New Zealand casinos are waiting to hear whether they can register for online gambling, or whether the government will follow Australia’s’ lead.
“We’re working through all the gaming laws at the moment,that’s probably the last one we’ll look at because it’s the newestthere are no laws surrounding it but we want to be sure there are protections for peoplethat’s what we’re looking at,” says Internal Affairs Minister George Hawkins.
Already the Christchurch casino has set up on-line offshore.
All it takes to place a bet is access to a credit card,access to the Internet. Casino-style age restrictionshost responsibility count for nothing on the web.