Lithuania Moves Forward with Protective LegislationPublished February 21, 2020 by Lee R
Self-exclusion is on the rise in Lithuania, so why shouldn't corresponding legislation keep pace?
Lithuania's legislature Seimas has passed a new gambling harm bill.
The measure requires all gambling advertisements to include a warning about gambling-related harm as of 1 July.
Proposed by Mykolas Majauskas of the Homeland Union Lithuanian Christian Democratic Party as an amendment to Article 10 of the country’s gambling laws, the bill was passed by consensus after no objections were raised at its first reading.
Majauskas explained his perspective on the legislation:
“Gambling is not an evil in itself, but as the sector develops, it is important to be able to control the risks involved and minimise the negative consequences.”
The warning content will be determined by Lithuania’s gambling regulator, the Lošimų Priežiūros Tarnyba (Gambling Authority):
“By law, we would oblige the Gambling Authority to set clear rules and to make notes that would change every time,” Majauskas further expressed the need for a responsible and sensible approach to legal applications.
The bill falls in line with the example set by other EU countries in prioritizing social protections, calling the priorities of his professional efforts three-pronged:
“...first, we need to educate; secondly, we must help those who have problems; third, we need to help people who have loved ones who have gambling problems.”
Educate in Ads
Public education in advertising is a priority of the new regime.
Majauskas further recommended periodic change of slogans, in order to “stop viewers of advertisements from becoming too used to any one slogan and it losing its effect.”
As far as the always telling self-exclusion engagement index, Seimas noted in the passing of the bill that 510 Lithuanians signed up for the Gambling Authority’s self-exclusion scheme in December 2019, to reach a figure surpassing the yearly average since the scheme started in 2007.
The means by which each jurisdiction implements protections is an intriguing process which should be watched closely, jurisdiction by jurisdiction, to inform ongoing overall global iGaming adaptation.