Wilkie and Xenophon Revive Rejected Idea...Again

Andrew Wilkie and Nick Xenophon’s reheated anti-gambling plan would cost more than $1.5 billion and not help a single problem gambler access counselling or treatment.

Clubs Australia Executive Director Anthony Ball said that $1 maximum bets had already been rejected by two Parliamentary inquiries, one of which was chaired by Andrew Wilkie.

“The economic, social and employment costs of this policy thought-bubble from Xenophon and Wilkie are even more astounding when you consider that the majority of problem gamblers bet less than $1 per spin,” he said.

“The Australian Government has previously costed the introduction of $1 maximum bets nationwide at in excess of $1.5 billion.

“There is good reason why the last two Federal Parliaments looked at and promptly rejected $1 maximum bets.

“Nick Xenophon and Andrew Wilkie have set out their priorities for this Parliament, but I doubt they are shared by the Australian people.  The establishment of another committee on gambling to consider a bad plan that has been rejected multiple times, is a poor use of the Parliament’s time.”

In contrast, Clubs Australia, with the support of governments has introduced a range of evidence-based, cost-effective and targeted solutions to help address problem gambling, such as the world-first Online Multi-Venue Self-Exclusion system, club chaplaincy and counselling services.

The industry’s ClubSAFE responsible gambling program has also been recognised for its contribution to harm-minimisation measures on the global stage.

It is these types of industry-led initiatives, and our collaborative approach to working with State and Territory Governments, researchers and treatment services, which has seen the rate of problem gambling fall to less than 1% of the adult population – a remarkably low figure by world standards.