by Antoni Majewski

GambleAware Highlights Gambling Harms in Minority Communities in Great Britain

GambleAware, a leading charity in Great Britain focused on preventing gambling harm, has released a study highlighting the specific challenges faced by individuals from minority communities regarding gambling harms.

GambleAware Releases Data Maps Revealing Gambling Harms in Great Britain

The research, conducted by Ipsos UK and ClearView Research in collaboration with the University of Manchester, sheds light on the intersection of gambling, discrimination, and social challenges.

Key Findings: Discrimination, Coping Mechanisms, and Barriers to Support

The study reveals that individuals from minority communities who face gambling problems are 50% more likely to experience racism or discrimination compared to those without gambling issues. This discrimination is linked to increased vulnerability to gambling harms, exacerbated by factors like social exclusion, limited employment opportunities, and mental health risks.

Moreover, the research indicates that minority individuals who gamble are three times more likely than their White British counterparts to use gambling as a coping mechanism for life challenges. This finding underscores the complex social and emotional drivers behind gambling behaviors in these communities.

A significant concern raised by the study is the hesitancy of individuals from minority communities to seek support for gambling problems. This reluctance stems from discomfort in discussing gambling issues with friends, family, or support services, and is compounded by a lack of awareness about available gambling support. Trust issues with healthcare providers and support services, often rooted in past experiences of racism and discrimination, further exacerbate this challenge.

Influence of Gambling Marketing and Advertising

Participants in the study also expressed concerns about the disproportionate influence of gambling marketing and advertising on minority groups, particularly due to limited understanding of the risks involved in gambling.

Zoë Osmond, CEO of GambleAware, emphasizes the availability of tailored support for people from all backgrounds: Gambling harms can affect anyone, but they can be more common and more damaging in communities that face social inequality – such as these minority groups. Fortunately, help is out there. The National Gambling Support Network offers confidential, tailored support for people from all backgrounds. It also does a lot of community outreach to raise awareness and increase early intervention, so that people from all backgrounds know where to turn and can get help before gambling problems turn into an addiction.”

Recommendations and Future Funding Programme

The study recommends that gambling support services work to increase confidence amongst minority groups, focusing on service organization, advertisement, and delivery methods to be more inclusive and trustworthy.

In response to these findings, GambleAware is launching a new funding programme in December 2023, with £4.3m available to organizations in England, Scotland, and Wales, aiming to reduce gambling harm inequality experienced by women and people from minority religious and ethnic communities.

Our Comment on the Article

This research by GambleAware is crucial in highlighting the nuanced challenges faced by minority communities in Great Britain regarding gambling harms. It brings to light the intersectionality of gambling, discrimination, and social exclusion, offering valuable insights into the unique experiences of these communities. The findings underscore the need for culturally sensitive and accessible support services, tailored outreach, and education efforts.

Such initiatives are vital to address the underlying factors contributing to gambling harms and to ensure equitable access to support and recovery resources. The upcoming funding programme by GambleAware is a commendable step towards mitigating these challenges and promoting a more inclusive approach to gambling harm prevention and treatment.

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