Conservative Voice Smith Calls for Elimination of UKGC, Remains HopefulPublished January 3, 2021 by Lee R
During the review of the UK Gambling Act, MP Smith calls for an extreme measure.
We all know the UK is reviewing the entire Gambling Act of 2005 guidelines, but did you know the UKGC itself may be scrutiny as well?
MP Smith's Position
The UK's conservative MP Iain Smith has proposed the UK Gambling Commission be replaced outright with an independent regulatory body to oversee the UK gambling industry, which has come under fire due to concerns about player protection.
The blunt move suggested by MP Smith as part of the review of the UK Gambling Act of 2005 was suggested from his position as vice-chairman of the Gambling-related harm All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG).
Smith told Politics Home website that the Gambling Act review is an opportunity to review the powers of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) as well. Smith further asserted that the Government should be “rid of it (the Gambling Commission) altogether.”
Smith calls for the Government to seize the day with bold moves to ensure that the proper control is installed to end gambling abuses and addictions.
Using Evidence for Policy
Smith further called for the evidence which APPG has collected regarding gambling harm to be included in the government’s inquiry.
Problem Gambling Prevalence
Of the 430,000 problem gamblers estimated in the UK, Smith decried these figures and estimated the true numbers to be much higher and approaching 2 million people.
Of the most vulnerable population of concern, Smith said the number of problem gamblers aged 11 to 16 has increased from 55,000 to 62,000.
Preying on the Weak
Systemically, Smith expressed concern over the skyrocketing profits in the UK's gaming industry being collected from those who are most addicted. With some 60% of the gambling profits coming from 5% of the players, those 5% are experiencing the most harm in the various unfortunate ways that addiction manifests in people's lives.
Of the current improvements, Smith supports the Government’s increase of the minimum age for participation in the National lottery to 19, calling this the “beginning of a real sea change” in the attitude towards gambling abuses.
Despite the seemingly extreme suggestion, it is encouraging to hear that one of the UK's most conservative influential voices remains hopeful in this delicate and vital time of review.