The Canadian Gaming Association has pointed to nationwide benefits of a legalised, regulated gaming industry as the group backs calls made to see the introduction of single-event sports betting.
This comes as the not-for-profit organisation welcomes comments made by Windsor West Liberal candidate Sandra Pupatello, who has called for an amendment to the criminal code to permit single-event sports betting, stating “there is no reason to hold back on this initiative.”
Stressing that “the Canadian gaming industry touches almost every corner of our country, from Corner Brook, Newfoundland to Victoria, British Columbia,” the CGA emphasises benefits felt by “hundreds of communities” in its fresh sport wagering calls.
Providing in the region of 182,500 jobs with an average national wage of $65,000, a portion of the gaming revenue generated equalling $9.1bn is also transferred to fund government, community programs, charitable causes and First Nations initiatives.
However, inaction on single-event sports wagering means these benefits are threatened, stresses the CGA, especially in border communities like Windsor.
“We are thrilled to have Ms Pupatello’s support and call on all parties to fight for the simple amendment that provinces requested 10 years ago that would benefit places like Windsor,” stated Paul Burns, president and CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association.
“This change would give provinces the tools to deliver a safe and legal option to Canadians while helping economic benefits, such as jobs, flow to communities and provincial governments.”
Canadians wager approximately $10bn annually through illegal bookmaking operations in Canada, with an additional $4bn done so through offshore online sports wagering sites.
“Let us not lose sight of how one small change can drive enormous benefits to the Canadian gaming industry, Canadian communities, as well as Canadians, who just want to be able to bet on the outcome of the Stanley Cup, NBA Finals or World Series,” added Burns.
“The CGA has been advocating for single-event sports wagering for a decade. With all party support and assistance from our federal government, its time has come.”