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West Norfolk MP backs gambling law reform plans

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North West Norfolk MP James Wild has welcomed plans for tougher rules governing online gambling.

The Gambling Commission this week announced reforms that operators will have to abide by from this autumn.

The measures include a formal requirement for operators to clearly show players their profits or losses during a session of play.

Are we gambling more during the lockdown? (34588654)
Are we gambling more during the lockdown? (34588654)

Companies will be banned from offering a system known as reverse withdrawal - where players are allowed to re-gamble money they had previously decided to take out of their accounts.

And firms will also be prevented from using auto-play functions, features which speed up play or give players the idea of control over the outcome and the use of graphics which imply a win when returns are equal to or less than the money staked.

Mr Wild said: “These are welcome measures to help make gambling through online slots games safer.

James Wild (Con) NW Norfolk MP. Picture: Richard Townshend (32921837)
James Wild (Con) NW Norfolk MP. Picture: Richard Townshend (32921837)

“However, there are 395,000 problem gamblers in the UK and I know from my constituents the devastating impact it has had on their mental health, families, and relationships.

“The review of the Gambling Act provides the opportunity to take further necessary steps to protect vulnerable people including stake limits, a proper right of redress for individuals when firms don’t meet their obligations, and a more effective regulatory regime.”

Mr Wild’s comments followed weekend reports that the government is considering a ban on betting companies advertising on sports shirts.

Concerns have grown about the links between gambling and sport, with many Premier League and Championship football clubs having betting firms as their main shirt sponsors.

But any changes could present major challenges for sports like snooker and darts, where many eventts are sponsored by betting firms and players routinely wear their logos on clothing.

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