As the UK enters its autumn months as COVID-19 restrictions are implemented across the world, GamCare has urged its treatment support and broader partners to raise more awareness of ‘gambling-related financial harm’ (GRFH).
GamCare estimates year-on-year that about 70 percent of callers to its National Gambling Helpline would respond to a degree of gambling debt or gambling-induced financial hardship.
GRFH has been described by GamCare as a key area of focus, partnering with multiple partners to help recognise unhealthy customer habits, while strengthening support for those who are experiencing gambling-induced financial hardships.
In 2019, to collaborate and expand awareness of GRFH problems, GamCare brought together banks, debt advisory agencies, gambling support programmes and gambling leadership.
Progress on GRFH has seen eight UK banks introduce ‘gambling block’ services to their digital current accounts, enabling customers to block or limit gambling operator transactions.
A Gamcare statement read: “Our programme is a cross-sector initiative to share knowledge, develop resources and enable organisations to help affected customers as early as possible, so that harms do not escalate.
“Our Advisory Group includes representatives from all four sectors, as well as individuals with lived experience of gambling harms.”
Following the introduction of its ‘new financial toolkit’ for financial firms, gaming companies and debt advisory agencies around the UK, GamCare calls for broader awareness of GRFH issues to provide more assistance for consumers suffering gambling-related harms.
GamCare aims to improve preferred stakeholder guidelines for gambling-related debt while discussing GRFH issues, while enhancing how operators use data to recognise and analyse consumer affordability.
The introduction of the toolkit marks the first time that ‘to address gambling-related financial harms in a unified way,’ leaders from around these sectors have come together.
GamCare added: “Our Gambling Related Financial Harm Toolkit, is aimed at giving organisations the tools to offer consistent, high-quality customer communications about gambling risks, and improving access to support so that issues can be addressed as early as possible and don’t escalate.”