Greens promise to tackle the pokies

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SHANE Rattenbury says the ACT Greens have announced a plan to put people before pokies with mandatory pre-commitment, $1 bets, and a major reduction in the number of pokies across Canberra.

“Australians are the biggest gamblers in the world. We lose more money per person than anywhere else on the face of the earth,” Shane said.

“It’s time to put people before pokies and stand up to the gambling lobby.

“Only the Greens have a plan to support clubs to transition away from this broken business model that causes so much damage to people struggling with addiction, their families and our community.”

Gaming and racing spokesperson Michael Mazengarb says that it is up to the Greens to take action and put the community first.

“Our plan includes $1 maximum bets and mandatory pre-commitment on all pokies so that people can decide how much they’re willing to lose before pushing the first button,” Michael said.

Michael also announced a plan to get more pokies out of the community over the next ten years, and work with clubs to diversify their income and become less dependant on pokie revenue.

“Canberra has the highest rate of poker machines in the country. These machines are addictive and manipulative, and are designed that way so that people lose money.

“That’s why we have a plan to reduce the number of poker machines by 30%. That’s one in three machines set to go.

“We have put forward a suite of measures to support clubs to end their reliance on pokies, including incentivising harm minimisation measures, implementing a red tape reduction team and ensuring there’s a level playing field between the clubs and the Casino in the Territory.”

“Pokies are addictive, they break up families, ruin lives and send people into financial ruin. Only the Greens will stand with the community and take real action.”

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