Delayed again: UK gambling law review pushed back until May
The government review of gambling laws is now expected to be pushed back until May as internal tension at Whitehall looks to delay the process once again.
According to reports from the Guardian, the department for digital, culture, media and sport (DCMS) launched a review of gambling laws in December 2020, which was originally expected to be published at the end of 2021.
It comes after growing concerns about children’s exposure to gambling and addiction concerns across the UK.
However, the white paper was then postponed until early 2022 after the cabinet reshuffle that saw John Whittingdale replaced as gambling minister by Chris Philp. Three inside sources told the paper that the white paper is set to be delayed once again.
This has caused backlash amongst some gambling addiction campaigners.
Liz Ritchie co-founded the charity Gambling With Lives with husband Charles after the suicide of their son Jack, who had become addicted to gambling while at school, told the Guardian: “Someone takes their life every day in the UK because of gambling, so we simply cannot wait until May to see this white paper.”
Ministers and DCMS officials have been working closely with the industry regulator, the Gambling Commission, on the white paper, and despite reports, DCMS have given no specific date for publication.
Back in December, the Gambling Minister emphasised at the GambleAware annual conference: “Our review is looking at a very wide range of issues and our call for evidence received 16,000 submissions which we are considering carefully. We will publish a White Paper which sets out our vision for the sector in the coming months.”