The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has awarded Yorkshire and the Humber £800,000 to develop its community-focused gambling harm prevention and support programme.
The region’s funding forms part of the UKGC’s National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms – in which public health directors will develop a customised programme treating problem gambling harms across the eight counties forming Yorkshire and the Humber.
The three-year programme will focus on education and prevention and provide access to support and treatment for individuals and their families experiencing problem gambling.
Greg Fell, Chair of the Yorkshire & Humber harmful gambling working group, said: “We aim to deliver a gold standard programme that can be replicated across the UK. We are in the unique position of having a diverse population across city, town, rural and coastal environments, which offers the potential for an effective activity blueprint that could be used by other regions.
“We know high deprivation areas and low-income workers are disproportionately negatively affected by gambling, so this will be our focus.”
Key objectives will see the programme improve the identification of problem gambling through training in workplaces, raising awareness of support services and working with local communities to eradicate gambling addiction stigmas that impede the vulnerable from accessing help or treatment.
The UKGC’s National Strategy has been reorganised to apply a public health perspective to tackling gambling-related harms at a local level, supporting the UK’s most vulnerable communities irrespective of social challenges.
Tim Miller, Executive Director at the Gambling Commission, said, “We welcome this ambitious project across Yorkshire and Humber. A cohesive public health approach to tackling gambling harms is exactly what the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms aims to stimulate. We are pleased to be able to approve the funding, which was agreed through a regulatory settlement.