MEDIA RELEASE - Record penalty for Illawarra Pokies Club raises questions about NSW Coalition's Deal with Clubs NSW
Steelers Footy Club have been fined $100k for serious breaches of pokies rules. Patrons were give free drinks and large cash advances were disguised as purchases to induce gamblers to spend more money on the clubs poker machines.
This is a good decision by the regulator, but the level of the fine pales into insignificance when compared to the approximately $120 million a year in pokies losses in the Wollongong area alone.
These are serious breaches that could have life threatening consequences on people suffering from gambling addiction. We know that gambling addiction can lead to housing insecurity, family breakdowns and violence, and even suicide.
The NSW Government has a clear conflict of interest when it comes to regulating the pokies in the public interest. They should rule out signing another MOU with Clubs NSW.