The UK Labour Party announce plans to put a stop on gambling ads!

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The subject sports betting is hitting in the headlines in the UK more and more recently, and one of the reasons was because of the increase in the number of gambling companies sponsoring English Premier League clubs. Another headline came when ASA; the Advertising Standards Agency announced that it was looking into ‘bet now’ offers which were aired during the FIFA 2018 Russia World Cup, but now, the deputy leader of the UK Labour Party has had enough and is calling for action.

Put a Stop To Gambling Ads!

Tom Watson is the deputy leader and he is calling on an outright ban on gambling ads during live sporting events. In the UK, Gambling ads are not allowed to appear during the watershed (this is the time that children can view television, so up until 9pm) with one exception; live sporting events. When live sports are aired during the day, gambling ads are permitted, which is why the Labour Party is wanting a ban.

A recent study by the party revealed that there were 430,000 known gambling addicts in the UK and of this number, a shocking 25,000 of them were children under the age of 16! Describing the problem as ‘a public health emergency’ Mr Watson has laid out plans for a whistle-to-whistle ban on ads, but the opposition party; the Conservatives, have criticised them for ‘liberalising the gambling market when it was in power’.

Anti-Gambling

Tom Watson expressed his concerns when speaking to the BBC Today Programme; “We’re not anti-gambling. We just think we need to tighten up regulations because there has been a digital revolution in these new products since the last piece of legislation. Even the industry are saying that TV advertising for in-sport betting is getting out of hand and needs dealing with. Gambling companies have to take more responsibility for harm caused by their products and contribute more to research and treatment.”

The plans would also see a levy imposed on gambling operators, to replace the voluntary one which is currently in place plus they would put a stop on using credit cards to fund gambling online. New plans would also see customers requesting banks to ban all gambling transactions, but not everyone is keen on the idea. Richard Flint, the Sky Bet boss said he welcomed the levy but imposing a ban on ads and credit cards would not help; “We’ll study the advertising proposals carefully but think any type of blanket ban removes a key incentive for operators to get a UK gambling licence and therefore could leave UK customers more vulnerable to disreputable operators. And our data on credit cards suggests that it is those customers with multiple cards that are at greater risk of harm so we believe attention should be placed on that rather than a complete ban.”