A new gambling levy will mean all gambling operators paying equally towards research, prevention and treatment of gambling addiction.
The new proposed levy is estimated to raise £100 million of funding for the NHS. Online gambling operators will be set to pay 1% on gross gambling yield, while betting shops and casinos will pay around 0.4%.
Additionally, the gambling industry will no longer have a say in how the money is spent. The Gambling Commission will instead distribute funding direct to the NHS and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).
‘We are taking the next step in our plan to protect those most at risk of gambling harm,’ says Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer, following April’s white paper. ‘The introduction of this levy will strengthen the safety net and help deliver our long-term plan to help build stronger communities while allowing millions of people to continue to gamble safely.’
Earlier this year, the NHS announced seven new specialist gambling addiction clinics to open across the country. This is alongside seven already in operation, and the national clinic in London.
The government has also set out a range of measures to protect players and mitigate the risks of gambling addiction. These measures include financial risk checks, stake limits, and tighter controls on marketing bonuses. Alongside the Gambling Commission, the government plans to have key elements in place by summer 2024.
Claire Murdoch, mental health director for the NHS said:
‘The NHS has long called for a statutory levy because it is only right that this billion-pound industry steps up to support people suffering from gambling addiction and I am pleased that action is being taken to prevent people from coming to harm in the first place. It is now vital we continue working in partnership to ensure we provide effective prevention, education and treatment for this condition.’
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