By Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association,
As the “March is Problem Gambling Awareness Month” national campaign celebrates 20 years, ORLA wants to join the efforts in helping increase public awareness of problem gambling and the availability of prevention, treatment and recovery services. Problem gambling is defined as all gambling behavior patterns that compromise, disrupt or damage personal, family or vocational pursuits. Approximately 2 million U.S. adults (1% of the population) are estimated to meet criteria for severe problem gambling. Another 4-6 million (2-3%) meet the criteria for mild or moderate problem gambling.
ORLA President & CEO, Jason Brandt, serves on the Oregon Council on Problem Gambling whose mission is to promote the health of Oregonians through supporting efforts to minimize gambling-related harm. This organization strives to provide the highest quality, cutting-edge responsible problem gambling awareness and educational services to Oregonians.
“Problem gambling is not an issue we think about just once a year in conjunction with awareness month,” said Jason Brandt, President & CEO of ORLA. “Gambling in Oregon generates approximately $1 billion every biennium for the State of Oregon and is the second largest revenue source behind personal income taxes. Our members who partner with the Oregon Lottery as retailers in many cases are a crucial intermediary in our collective efforts to maximize revenue for numerous state programs and services while upholding the tenants of responsible gaming. Retailers remain the most comprehensive network of operators who can identify and address problem gambling in partnership with the Oregon Lottery.”
As stakeholders in the gaming industry, Oregon Lottery retailers are required to take retailer training to promote Responsible Gaming. Retailer employees can access the ‘Responsible Gaming and You’ training and earn a certificate on the Oregon Lottery website.
Some warning signs of a gambling problem are:
- Thinking about gambling all the time.
- Feeling the need to bet more money and more often.
- Going back to try to win your money back (“chasing losses”).
- Feeling restless or irritable when trying to stop or cut down.
If you know someone who may need help, they can call the National Helpline at 1-800-GAMBLER for more information about problem gambling and referral to local help.
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