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Campaign flags risks of gifting lottery products to children

| By Robert Fletcher
The US National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) and the International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviours at McGill University have launched a new campaign highlighting the risks of gifting lottery products to children and young people.

Now in its sixth year, the 2023 Gift Responsibly Campaign focuses on gift-giving during the holiday season. It will emphasise how exposure to gambling during childhood could lead to someone developing a gambling problem later in life.

Some 66 lotteries and 84 community organisations around the world have declared their support for the campaign. Backers include all eligible US and Canadian lotteries such as the New Jersey Lottery, Colorado Lottery and Pennsylvania Lottery,

International lotteries and non-lottery organisations supporting the project include Lotto New Zealand and the National Lottery of Croatia.

All participating organisations will run a series of initiatives in November and December to promote the campaign. Topics include educating communities about the dangers of gifting lottery tickets to children and promoting responsible gambling for those of legal age who choose to gamble.

The campaign offers a tiered approach for lotteries, with increasing levels of participation. Supporter activities will include public service announcements, social media messaging, digital advertising, in-store signage and retailer training.

NCPG: Lottery products not a suitable gift for children

NCPG executive director Keith Whyte praised the level of support for this year’s campaign. He said it is crucial to recognise lottery tickets are not suitable gifts for children or teens.

“The Gift Responsibly campaign stands out as one of the largest international responsible gambling awareness campaigns, underlining our collective commitment to safeguarding youth and promoting responsible gambling practices worldwide,” Whyte said.

Jeffrey Derevensky, director of the International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviours, also spoke about the importance of the campaign.

“With the growing social acceptability and opportunities available for gambling on an international level, it is important to remember that even young people may experience gambling-related problems,” Derevensky said. 

“The Gift Responsibly Campaign is a great reminder for adults not to gift lottery tickets to minors.”

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