William Eichler 15 February 2016

Councils tackle gambling-related harm with ‘cutting edge’ research

Councils tackle gambling-related harm with ‘cutting edge’ research image

Two local authorities have become the first in the UK to map people at risk of gambling-related harm in their communities.

Westminster and Manchester City Councils have published reports which show who may be at greater risk of harm from gambling - because of mental health issues or addictions, for example - and where they might be located.

This information, which has been compiled by data science consultants Geofutures with the support of the Local Government Association (LGA), will help make it easier to understand the potential impact of gambling premises.

It will also better inform decisions about the location of new outlets.

At the same time, it will also help gambling operators to put in measures, such as more staff and changes in opening hours, which can help alleviate the possible negative affects of gambling.

In the Gambling Act 2005, children, the young and the vulnerable are singled out for special regulatory attention, with the aim that they should be protected from being harmed or exploited by gambling.

This was then expanded in April 2016 when the Government made it a requirement for all industry operators to undertake local area risk assessments to explore the risks gambling venues might pose to young and vulnerable people.

Pointing out how difficult it is to identify people living with gambling problems, Cllr Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council's executive member for neighbourhoods, said: ‘This is a cutting edge piece of research that has never been done before, and will enable us to understand who is at risk of developing a gambling problem and where these groups can be found.

‘We will be able to use this information whenever we develop new policies to deal with gambling venues across the city.’

Cllr Nickie Aiken, Westminster City Council cabinet member for public protection and chairman of Westminster’s licensing committee, said: ‘We are not against the gambling industry per se, but we think that it is important to understand the impact on areas in which they operate.’

Cllr Aiken continued: ‘It is in the best interests of those running gambling premises to reduce these negative impacts. This research is a major step forward – it will make for better local decisions and help deliver real practical change to people’s lives.’

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Worker - SGO & Connected Person Assessment Team

Essex County Council
Social Worker - Special Guardianship Order (SGO) & Connected Person Assessment Team Chelmsford £30,906 - £42,254 Salary scale according to skills a England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Refuse Driver (LGV Chargehand Driver)

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£22995 - £24258 per annum + plus contractual overtime and allowances
It is an exciting time in Waste and Street Services at the Royal Borough of Greenwich. This is a opportunity to be part of a busy, successful team mak England, London, Greenwich
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Management Information Assistant

Brent Council
£24,462 - £26,724 p.a. inc (pro rata)
The successful candidate will have knowledge of relevant systems and software used in Finance and Human Resources. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Principal Traffic Signal and ITS Engineer

Warwickshire County Council
£40,876.00 - £42,821.00 plus annual standby allowance of £2,562.84
You will be responsible for the day-to-day operation and maintenance of our Urban Traffic Management and Control System. Warwickshire
Recuriter: Warwickshire County Council

Finance Business Partner (GR7)

Birmingham City Council
£57,698 - £74,887
A role of this scale calls for an experienced Finance Business Partner with tried and tested skills. Birmingham, West Midlands
Recuriter: Birmingham City Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue