GambleAware to fund gambling website blocker

12 October 2018

GambleAware has committed funds to new software designed to block access to betting websites and apps.

The charity has also issued a call for parents and families to educate young people about the risks associated gambling to help protect them from harm.

GambleAware has this week published a report from Ecorys on both the role and influence of parental and family behaviours on gambling-related harm in young people.

Key findings in the report include where parents taught responsible strategies to a young person, there was a feeling of more control, with young people being more aware of risks and less likely to be drawn to risky behaviour.

However, where parents lacked understanding about the risks of gambling, GambleAware said that it was “harder for them to take a protective role and share effective strategies in moderation and control”.
 
Clare Wyllie, director of research and evaluation at GambleAware, said although the report highlights the importance of the role both parents and families have to play, more research is needed into the issue.

“This research highlights the importance of parents in the lives of young people and gambling but also that parents and families are not always aware of the issues young people are facing,” she said.

“More research is needed in this area to support policy and practice going forward.”

Meanwhile, GambleAware has said that it will commit funds to new software as part of its treatment offering to people suffering with problem gambling.

Gamban software blocks access to licensed and illegal gambling sites, making it easier for consumers to exclude themselves from betting and gaming online or via apps.

GambleAware made the decision after carrying out an independent evaluation of various products and although it found Gamban was the most effective, the cost of the software would prove a stumbling block for many.

The charity said it will fund the software to reduce the cost and encourage more people to use the product as part of their treatment. People calling the National Gambling Helpline who are referred for treatment from GamCare, its network of regional partners, the National Problem Gambling Clinic, and the Gordon Moody Association can now use the Gamban software for free.

Marc Etches, chief executive of GambleAware said: “Blocking software can be an effective tool to help those at-risk of getting into difficulties resist the ubiquitous gambling adverts and special offers that surround us these days.

“This report reinforces the point that such tools work best as part of a treatment package tailored to the individual rather than being effective in isolation. This evaluation gives us the confidence we needed to fund the use of this software for anyone who is referred to our treatment services.”

The move comes ahead of this year’s Responsible Gambling Week, which runs from November 1-7. Aspers, Mecca, William Hill and Cashino are among the top brands to have pledged their support to the initiative.

Image: Santeri Viinamäki