Gaming Industrys Responsible Gambling Programs

The American Gaming Association (AGA), the national trade association for casinos, in 1996 took a major voluntary step forward in creating the Responsible Gaming Resource Guide, which provided a blueprint for establishing a responsible gaming program. In 1997, AGA also established the National Center for Responsible Gaming that is a significant funder of basic research into problem gambling (American Gaming Association, 1998). In the late 1990s, a few state gaming regulatory bodies began to require responsible gaming programs in order for private sector gambling operators to be licensed. Native American-owned casinos have also developed innovative responsible gambling programs. Although most state lotteries have responsible play programs in the year 2000, government efforts to promote responsible gambling (with a few exceptions) are not as progressive as those of the private sector. This may be due to the inherent difficulty of serving as both the regulator and operator of the lottery or because the lottery is incorrectly viewed as a relatively benign form of gambling. Funding for treatment, prevention and research programs by state governments began gradually in the late 1970s and by the end of the twentieth century approximately half the fifty states funded significant programs.

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