Gambling firms have pledged an extra £60m to help addicts, despite the fact the industry failed to reach a donation target set by a key charity last year.
The owners of William Hill, Ladbrokes Coral, Paddy Power Betfair, Skybet and Bet365 will increase their voluntary levy on gambling profits to one per cent from 0.1 per cent and increase contributions to £60m to help tackle addition.
Leading charity Gamble Aware asks all those who profit from the gambling industry in Britain to donate a minimum of 0.1 per cent of their gambling revenues to reach a target of £10m. But the industry fell short of reaching the donation target last year, giving only £9.6m.
More money to fund treatment and support for problem gamblers and those experiencing gambling related harm pledged by the UK’s biggest gambling firms https://t.co/DAHVXcUnNH If you want to talk to someone about a gambling problem, call the National Gambling Helpline 0808 8020 133 pic.twitter.com/1HrYe11xQq
— BeGambleAware (@BeGambleAware) July 2, 2019
GambleAware chief executive Marc Etches has said the charity welcomes the new initiative and stressed that it is vital that there is sufficient funding to provide support for problem gamblers and those that were at risk.
The industry has repeatedly come under fire over the small amount it spends to help addicts when profits and huge marketing budgets are taken into account. Some gambling firms donated sums like £1 and £5 to Gamble Aware in 2018/19 to ensure they were present on the list of donors.