Safer Gambling week as seen by the US
At a time like this, where operators in the UK are starting to maximize their efforts in offering their players the best protection and safety measures, it is crucial not to forget that such an approach is necessary in other prominent markets such as the US.
“The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language”.
The quote is commonly related to George Bernard Shaw, but as many UK operators and vendors swoop into the US market it is interesting to take note of just how each jurisdiction looks at responsible gambling issues in advance of Safer Gambling Week.
In 2020, the GB Gambling Commission announced a ban on the use of credit cards for online gambling. Nonetheless, British companies, as well as their partners or subsidiaries operating in the US are still able to accept credit cards for online gambling in a few states.
Another factor that separates both governments is their role in responsible gambling. In the United Kingdom, it is well known that government does and should play an important role the reduction of all harm related to gambling, mostly through the Gambling Commission and National Health Service.
Meanwhile in the US, there is no national gambling regulator, and the federal health agency does not receive or spend any money on problem gambling and player security. While states have the primary role to regulate and tax gambling, most take no responsibility for any problems that occur as a direct result of gambling. Of the states that legalized sports betting since May 2018, it is known that merely half of them dedicated any of their new revenue to try to minimize harm. Eight states still adamantly refuse to provide any public funds to prevent or help in the treatment of gambling-related problems.
British companies and players may be shocked to hear of this responsibility falling onto the shoulders of the operators themselves. But it also provides an opportunity for companies to leverage their strengths and partners with NGOs in order to develop dynamic and responsible gambling programs without all the bureaucratic hindrances that come within the baggage of being involved with the government.
Everyone looking forward to Safer Gambling Week in hope that many British gambling companies will embrace safer gambling, even in the US. Operators are offered the opportunity to learn from evidence across all administrations, while keeping in mind that even in this area of globalization there are still many notable differences in governance traditions and systems, industry expectations and obligations and individual consumer behavior. There is so much America and the United Kingdom can learn from each other in the pursuit of ways to best minimize all problems caused by gambling.