Coronavirus Troubled Players Surge in the UK

Coronavirus lockdown has caused a major rise in problem gamblers seeking help, indicating " first signs of a storm. This data was provided by a leading gambling charity.

The Gordon Moody Association runs treatment programs for people with severe gambling addiction. According to its representatives, the number of requests from problem players increased from 30 to 1,000 per month between April and June. At the height of the lockdown, the number of calls from people expressing suicidal thoughts reached five per day.

Matthew Hickey, chief executive of the charity, said: “We felt we were likely to experience a major storm due to the coronavirus crisis. However, the reality is that these numbers may still be the first signs of a storm.”

The charity reported that there has been an increase in the number of young men and women seeking treatment or advice. These figures are consistent with other data. During the decline in the popularity of gambling, due to the cancellation of sporting events, the activity of regular players has increased. At the same time, online casino revenues increased.

According to a representative of the GVC holding quarter fell 22%, but online revenue rose 20%. According to numerous studies, the level of gambling addiction in online casinos is higher than in sports betting.

Data released by the Gambling Commission in May showed that the volume of sports betting fell by 31%. But in the meantime, online poker activity has grown by 38%, virtual sports betting by 40%, and online casino by 25%.

Matthew Hickey hopes that closer scrutiny of gambling help reduce the labeling that prevents problem players from accessing treatment. “I think just like 10-15 years ago, mental health has become something that people have started talking about openly. I hope that we will use this opportunity to ensure that the public stigmatization of gambling addiction disappears. People will feel they can ask for the help they need,” said Hickey.

The UK government had previouslyplanned to open land-based gambling establishments at the beginning July. But the decision has been revised. Land-based casinos remain closed despite the fact that bookmakers and lottery halls have resumed their work.

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Position: Author of analytical materials Higher education Age: 24 years old Experience: more than 5 years Brief biography: Born on March 24, 1997 in the city of Volkhov, Leningrad Region. In 2015 he successfully graduated from a secondary school, after which he entered the Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics...
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