An influential group of Westminster politicians say they will hold the UK government to account and ensure promised reforms are implemented “as quickly as possible”.
The All Party Parliamentary Group on Gambling Related Harm (APPG) announced the launch of a white paper inquiry on Wednesday (June 14), aimed at analysing and assessing the measures included in the recently released white paper on gambling regulation, as well as setting out its recommendations for the government during upcoming consultations.
Carolyn Harris, chair of the APPG, explained that although the group “entirely welcomes” many of the proposals in the white paper, “there is clearly more work to be done”.
Announcing the inquiry, the APPG said its focus has been to modernise and develop regulations and it is “pleased to see the government commit to take forward reforms in key areas”.
However, the APPG is also “disappointed to see the relatively weak proposals set out on restrictions to gambling advertising, including for white label and affiliate products. Much more must be done on advertising to protect children and young people.”
The APPG will be holding evidence sessions in the near future looking at these measures that it believes have been overlooked.
Additionally, the APPG said it would also welcome evidence or submissions to it from stakeholders by July 11 to help inform its thinking and recommendations.
In particular, the APPG wants evidence on how to protect children from gambling advertising, the operation and parameters of affordability checks, the optimal system for data sharing, the operation of an ombudsman, how the statutory levy should work and an optimal stake limit for online slots, as well as how game design can be modified to prevent harm.
The group will also continue to look into other areas of potential harm, including those not within the remit of the white paper, such as the operation of the National Lottery and the emergence of new forms of gambling.
Speaking during a CMS webinar on June 5, Gambling Commission executive director Tim Miller said that the regulator is "on track" to publish the first round of white paper consultations before “schools break up in the summer” in late July.
In total, there are 17 significant policy changes that have been addressed in terms of “next steps” in the policy paper.
Consultations expected to be published this summer will include those covering financial risk checks, which is “probably the most significant thing”, according to Miller.