Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


A tough time for problem gamblers

MEDIA RELEASE

For immediate release

— Wellington, Friday 12 December 2014

A tough time for problem gamblers.

The Christmas holiday period can be an excruciating time for problem gamblers and a time of grief for their families.

The additional costs of Christmas, travel and hosting relatives and friends, as well as the myriad of pressures and expectations, can place those whose gambling has moved on from being simply a recreation at considerable risk.

The danger of them looking to gambling as an escape or the slimmest chance of a big win to pay the bills is heightened at this time, says National Director of The Salvation Army’s Addiction Services Commissioner Alistair Herring.

The human cost of harmful gambling seen by our staff includes chronic and acute debt, avoidable and prolonged poverty, increased alcohol abuse, neglected children, theft from family members, family breakups, deteriorating mental health and suicide, he says.

“Some families lose everything, including each other,” he says. “The effects on children in families affected by harmful gambling can be long-term and devastating.”

Problem gambling is a compulsive behaviour affecting between 24,000 and 80,000 New Zealand adults, with an additional estimated 167,800 low-risk gamblers who experience some harm from gambling. The ripple effect means a severe problem gambler is likely to affect between five and 10 other people, which means half a million people or more could be caught up in the chaos.

Symptoms of problem gambling include secrecy and lying about gambling, feelings of guilt or anxiety over gambling, selling things or borrowing money to gamble, going without the necessities in order to gamble, trying to win back losses, and a need to gamble larger amounts to get the same feelings of excitement.

While some stress at Christmas is unavoidable, there are a number of things families can do to reduce financial pressures and have a higher-quality holiday.
•The most memorable thing you can give children or your partner is good quality time and attention. Picnics at the beach or park or spending time together on a hobby, sport or other activity is something they will cherish long after presents wear out
•Don’t give scratch cards or other gambling products as gifts, particularly to children or young people. Not only is it illegal for people under 18 to gamble but some studies suggest it can contribute to young people becoming problem gamblers
•Have a plan when shopping for gifts and groceries. Write a list and set a budget for each person you buy for and for Christmas food
•Make Christmas gifts. People appreciate the effort and thought that goes into simple things such as home baking, crafts or homemade photo frames.
•Or agree on a $5 or $10 limit on Christmas presents, or do a Secret Santa. You will be surprised with what you can come up with some imagination and careful shopping
•Use cost-effective substitutions for Christmas dinner. A smoked chicken instead of ham is a great alternative, as is providing soft drinks rather than alcohol.

For those concerned with their gambling or others’ gambling, contact The Salvation Army on 0800 530 000 to find the nearest centre for free and confidential advice and support.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Howard Davis: Never Too Old To Rock & Roll - Jethro Tull

As Greil Marcus recently observed in an NYRB review of Robbie Robertson's autobiographical Testimony, in rock and roll there is always an origin story. In the case of Jethro Tull founder Ian Anderson, he claims to have been influenced by his father's big band and jazz record collections and the emergence of rock music in the 1950s, but became disenchanted with the "show biz" style of early US stars like Elvis Presley... More>>

October: Alice Cooper Returns To NZ

It was March 1977 when Alice Cooper undertook his first ever concert tour of New Zealand – and broke attendance records. 40 years on and this revered entertainer continues to surprise and exude danger at every turn, thrilling audiences globally! More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis Review: The Contemporary Relevance Of Denial

Denial has all the hallmarks of a riveting courtroom drama. Based on a 1996 British libel case that author David Irving brought against Lipstadt, the movie has been criticized as flat and stagey, but it nonetheless conveys a visceral clarity of vision and sense of overwhelming urgency. More>>

Obituary: John Clarke Dies Aged 68

Andrew Little: “I grew up with Fred Dagg and I am devastated by John Clarke’s death. He taught us to laugh at ourselves and more importantly laugh at our politicians.” More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis: Colin McCahon's 'on Going Out With The Tide'

Curated by Wystan Curnow and Robert Leonard, On Going Out with the Tide features major works that have been assembled from public and private collections across New Zealand and Australia. It focusses on McCahon’s evolving engagement with Māori subjects and themes, ranging from early treatments of koru imagery to later history paintings which refer to Māori prophets and investigate land-rights issues. More>>

Howard Davis: Rodger Fox Gets Out The Funk

By now a living New Zealand legend, band leader and trombonist Rodger Fox has performed with some of the biggest names in the jazz business, including Louie Bellson, Bill Reichenbach, Chuck Findley, Randy Crawford, Bobby Shew, Lanny Morgan, Bruce Paulson, Diane Schuur, Arturo Sandoval, David Clayton-Thomas, and Joe Williams, to name only a few. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news