Gambling Awareness - Gambling, Alcohol and Drug Education Case Study
The following case study is not based on any specific club's work, but should offer clubs practical ideas in what they can do to focus on gambling awareness.
The GAA’s sample gambling policy has been developed to:
- support the health and wellbeing of club members;
- to protect the integrity of our games and our players;
- provide a positive example in breaking the growing societal link between sport and betting.
It outlines club commitments, including:
- No betting-related sponsorship is accepted for club teams, gear, property, or equipment.
- All officers, players, mentors, and members are aware that GAA Rule 1.15 prohibits players, team management or match officials from betting on games in which they are involved; and that they are aware of the consequences of violating this rule (minimum sanction members face for offence is an eight-week suspension. Expulsion from the Association may also be considered in some cases.)
- The club upholds GAA Rule 5.8: Bookmaking shall not be permitted within Association property. (A member breaching or aiding the breach of this rule will be suspended for 24 weeks).
Within the club:
- Club Executive (to adopt any club policy)
- Club members, especially players who are an at-risk group when it comes to harmful gambling or gambling addiction, according to research
- Coaches – to help deliver the relevant messages to their players
- Members of the Health Club Project group to support any activities
Outside the club:
- Statutory services dedicated to the topic of problem gambling are limited but addiction treatment centres such as Cuan Mhuire www.cuammhuire.ie and the Dunlewey Addiction Services dunlewey.net are useful contacts
- A small number of high-profile GAA players have overcome their harmful gambling and now work as advocates in the field of gambling awareness – many clubs have booked these individuals to speak to players about their experiences
- Other useful links include: www.gambleaware.ie www.problemgambling.ie www.gamcare.org.uk
- Local addition counsellors/services can also provide talks on issues relating to addiction
Run a gambling awareness night and use it to launch the club’s new gambling policy. Some suggestions:
- As players are an at-risk group for harmful gambling identify the squads you want to have attend and ensure their coach/manager informs them and makes their attendance compulsory.
- Some research suggests that adolescents are 2/3 times more likely to gamble today (due to ease of access on smart phones etc) so consider engaging squads as young as U-16 up to adult.
- Make sure all club players/officials are aware of GA rule relating to their gambling – especially the fact they are not allowed to bet on a game in which they are involved.
- Run through the content of the club’s new policy to make sure everyone is aware of its aims
Impact on the club could include:
- Increased awareness of the causes and ramifications of problem gambling
- A reduced betting culture within squads/the entire club
- Increased awareness of how to talk and support to a club member/team mate who have be experiencing harmful gambling
- The club may wish to display posters with helping numbers, etc