Yorkshire and the Humber has secured £800,000 in funding, from a regulatory settlement approved by the Gambling Commission, to tackle gambling-related harms across the region.
The three-year programme will focus on education and prevention, and provide access to support and treatment for individuals and their families experiencing problem gambling.
Led by Public Health directors, and delivered as part of the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms, Yorkshire and the Humber will deliver a coordinated and comprehensive approach to gambling harm across the region.
Greg Fell, chair of the Yorkshire and Humber harmful gambling working group, said: “We aim to deliver a gold standard programme that can be replicated across the UK.
“We are in the unique position of having a diverse population across city, town, rural and coastal environments, which offers the potential for an effective activity blueprint that could be used by other regions.
“We know high deprivation areas and low income workers are disproportionately negatively affected by gambling, so this will be our focus.”
The programme aims to improve identification of problem gambling through training in workplaces, direct gamblers to self-management and support, protect high risk and vulnerable groups from gambling-related harm, and will work with individuals and communities to raise awareness and reduce stigma.
Tim Miller, executive director at the UKGC, noted: “We welcome this ambitious project across Yorkshire and Humber. A cohesive public health approach to tackling gambling harms is exactly what the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms aims to stimulate. We are pleased to be able to approve the funding, which was agreed through a regulatory settlement.”
Adding: “Gambling is a problem when it impacts, disrupts or damages an individual, their family or interferes with daily life. It is vital we do all we can to protect the most vulnerable in society, given the pace at which the gambling industry is growing and developing.”