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The UK Gambling Industry, led by the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC), The Bingo Association (BA) and the British Amusement Catering Trade Association (bacta), has today announced that Safer Gambling Week 2020 will take place from 19th – 25th November. The annual campaign builds on the success of Responsible Gambling Week, which began in 2017 – the first campaign to unite all sectors of the gambling industry – and marks the successful growth and evolution of the on-going awareness and education campaign, participants and supporters of which now extend far beyond the gambling sector.

The leading trade associations bring together every sector of the UK gambling industry through their membership, that work with the wide and diverse range of other supporting organisations (manufacturing, service, charities), all with the common objective of raising awareness of safer gambling behaviours and encouraging staff, customers and the wider public to discuss what it means to gamble more safely.

Let’s Talk About Safer Gambling will remain the strapline of Safer Gambling Week 2020: the tone set by this message has been well received by all supporters and has also been found, through research, to strike the right chord with the wide and diverse range of audiences that the campaign seeks to reach. In coming together with one voice, the campaign, through an ever increasing number and range of supporters, is able extend its reach, year on year, and build on and add to the work that takes place throughout the year on safer gambling, education, awareness and support.

Operators promote responsible gambling 365 days of the year, but Safer Gambling Week creates the opportunity for all businesses and organisations to start a conversation about safer gambling not only with their customers, but also with their staff and in turn their friends and family.

Michael Dugher, Chief Executive, Betting and Gaming Council, said: “As the new body representing the betting and gaming industry, the BGC is committed to driving up standards and promoting safer gambling.

 “Safer Gambling Week is a fantastic initiative which the BGC are proud to play a leading role in. This awareness campaign is now in its fourth year and it has achieved a significant increase in engagement at all levels on the tools and support available to customers.

“We achieved over 25 million impressions on social media in 2019, setting a new benchmark for the campaign, which demonstrates the breadth and reach of the campaign.

“Our members are determined to raise standards and as part of this year’s campaign can point to significant changes that we have introduced, including new cooling-off periods on gaming machines, substantially increased funding for research, education and treatment; a ‘whistle to whistle’ ban on advertising during sport; new ID and age-verification checks and a ban on betting with credit cards.

“And during the covid-19 outbreak, we have published a 10-pledge action plan to promote safer gambling, while our members also voluntarily agreed to remove TV and radio gaming advertising, replacing their slots with safer gambling messages or donating them to charity.

“As businesses emerge from lockdown, I’m looking forward to this year’s Safer Gambling Week being a tremendous success.”

Miles Baron, Chief Executive, The Bingo Association, said:

Safer Gambling Week is an important part of the bingo industry’s commitment to social responsibility and provides a useful focal point for highlighting activity and support that is available throughout the year. As businesses with venues, the sector recognises the important opportunity we have to promote safer gambling messages and engage directly with customers.”

John White, Chief Executive, bacta, said,

“Safer Gambling Week allows bacta members to highlight their year-long commitment to safer gambling, the safer gambling tools available to customers and the quality of the staff that engage with our customers on a daily basis.”

Safer Gambling Week 2020 artworks for promotional and messaging materials, including posters, web banners, social media collateral, contact cards and leaflets, are available, free of charge, for all participants. The materials use a range of six key messages to engage with audiences, with each item providing details of free and confidential contact points for further information and advice, and of social media platforms. The key messages:

  • Ask yourself… have you carried on past your spending limit?
  • Just a heads up… it’s good to set yourself limits
  • Just a heads up… it’s easy to lose track of time when gambling
  • Play smart… know when to stop
  • Remember… friends and family are more important than gambling
  • Remember… gambling is not a way to make money

Existing registered campaign supporters have already received confirmation of the dates for this year’s event and will receive further updates from Safer Gambling Week organisers as information and materials become available.

Organisations seeking information on Safer Gambling Week 2020 (SGWeek20), or how to become a registered supporter, should visit the Safer Gambling Week web site (www.safergamblingweek.org) or the Safer Gambling UK web site (www.safergamblinguk.org). The websites are key information points for Safer Gambling resources and information and for Safer Gambling Week 2020.

Safer Gambling Week 2020 social media channels are also live: @SGWeek20 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram #SGWeek20.

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