CLUBSACT CEO Jeff House has seen fit this morning to issue his “unedited statement” following a story in the daily paper about the Gambling and Racing Commission’s decision to introduce ticket-in to the ACT’s poker machines.He says the “Canberra Times” story included edited versions of his quotes.
“Notwithstanding the right of media outlets to edit material given to them, in some cases the editing of the quotes given, changed their meaning or emphasis,” he says.
“Therefore in the interests of ensuring what was provided is on the public record, the following statement is the unedited version of what was given to ‘The Canberra Times‘:
“Ticket-in was one of a number of measures we’ve [ClubsACT] asked government or the regulator to consider. Importantly, in every case they are measures which governments and regulators in other states have approved.
“The criticism being levelled at decisions made by either the government or the regulator over recent times comes from parts of the community that simply do not believe that gambling has a legitimate place in the Australian way of life. I appreciate that’s a view some people have but I reject the premise that policy should be formulated based on only that view.
“The proposition that the only changes government should make in relation to clubs are those that drive revenue down as an end in and of itself, is as unreasonable as the notion that for-profit casinos should operate without the same restrictions as not-for-profit clubs simply because their business is gambling or that online gambling is simply too hard to regulate.
“Gaming revenue has fallen by 31 per cent since 2006 and 3.5 per cent since the introduction of Ticket-in. Any claim that this is about increasing revenue is simply not supported by the facts.
“Ticket-in does not necessarily reduce the engagement with staff and certainly not in a significant way. Nor should any single measure be seen in isolation of the broad framework of harm minimisation measures such as anti-problem gambling messages which appear on the tickets. Further, ticket-in encourages breaks in play which is important from a harm minimisation perspective”.