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Safer Gambling Week 2023

Safer Gambling Week 2023

Sue Dawson

Here at Best New Bingo Sites we are pleased to support Safer Gambling Week 2023.

Safer Gambling Week is an annual cross-industry initiative to promote safer gambling in the United Kingdom and Ireland, coordinated by the Betting & Gaming Council with the support of partners across the industry.  It started back in 2017 (when it was called Responsible Gambling Week) and has been getting bigger and bigger every year.  Safer Gambling Week 2023 takes place on 13th – 19th November.

This year’s messaging has the same three pillars as last year’s:

  1. Let’s Talk  – about safer gambling
  2. Take Action – safer gambling tools
  3. Get Support – advice & helplines

Let’s Talk

This part of the messaging encourages players to think about their own gambling, talk about it and equip themselves with the knowledge and tools to take control and gamble more safely.  They direct players to GamCare’s online forums and chat as well as to the free National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133 (for players in Northern Ireland it’s 08000 886 725).

Here are some of the key points:

  • It’s good to set yourself limits
  • Gambling is not a way to make money
  • It’s good to take a break
  • Friends and family are more important than gambling

This year, they are suggesting players especially think about spending limits and point to GamCare’s excellent article “What Do We Mean By Affordability?

Take Action

Safer Gambling Week 2023

The Take Action part of the messaging is all about using safer gambling tools and this year, they are keeping simple, covering these five topics:

Set your time and deposit limits

All online operators MUST offer deposit limits and “Reality Check” which is a pop up reminder that appears at preset intervals to remind you how long you’ve been playing. The Safer Gambling website says that 400,000 deposit limits are set every month. This section also includes details of how you can set spending limits in bricks and mortar venues.

Self exclude from gambling

This section contains helpful information about self-exclusion schemes work, both online and offline, plus details of multi-operator schemes covering betting shops, casinos, bingo halls and arcades as well as the online scheme GAMSTOP.

Block gambling websites

This section points users at three tools that are specifically for this purpose – BetBlocker, Gamban and GamBlock.

Limit the gambling content you see

This section has step by step guidance on how to limit the gambling related content you see on Facebook, Twitter (aka X) and YouTube.

Block gambling payments with your bank

This section refers users to a list on the Gambling Commission website of which banks offer what gambling limit features.

In the interests of simplicity there’s no detail about the non compulsory safer gambling tools that many operators now offer over and above the mandated deposit limits and reality check.  Here’s some of what’s available.

  • Loss limits – this restricts the amount you can lose regardless of whether you deposited the money or won it
  • Stake limits – this restricts spin value
  • Wagering limits – this restricts the amount of play you can do regardless of whether you’re winning or losing
  • Session limits – this restricts the amount of time you can spend playing
  • Curfew/clock-off – this blocks deposits in preset time periods (e.g. late at night)
  • Payday timeout – blocks deposits on the day you get paid
  • Product exclusion – this allows players to block product types (e.g. block slots but allow sports betting) and in some cases even specific games

In addition, if you’re playing a slot game the operator has to show you how long you’ve been playing and how much you are up or down by.

Get Support

The Get Support part of the Safer Gambling Week website points users at a number of telephone helplines, websites and forums, with separate listings for the UK mainland, Northern Ireland and Ireland.  There are many other places you can get help and support and you can find links to them on our responsible gambling page and in the safer gambling policy documents on operator websites.

Join The Conversation

As part of encouraging the conversation around safer gambling there will be lots of posts about it on social media.  We’ll be sharing all of this safer gambling messaging on our Facebook page and Twitter account during Safer Gambling week and if you want to get involved too, the hashtag is #SGWeek23.

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