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Crocodile tears over gambling venue expenses

Publicans cry crocodile tears over gambling venue expenses

The Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand is outraged at the Charity Gaming Association's claims that charities and sports clubs would lose out with the introduction of lower gambling venue expenses.

"Is the Charity Gaming Association suggesting that New Zealand would have no Olympic or sporting heroes without pokies?" says John Stansfield, CEO of the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand (PGF).

"Before grants from gambling losses, New Zealand's Olympics and sporting heroes were funded from tobacco. A similar outcry occurred with the withdrawal of tobacco sponsorship, but our sports teams have still survived," says Mr Stansfield.

"Publicans are crying crocodile tears into their beers, as they will no longer continue to receive the lion's share of gambling losses," says Mr Stansfield.

New Zealanders lost $1.02 billion last year from pokies in pubs and clubs. Along with the monetary loss - which could have funded a number of worthwhile activities - problem gambling created a reliance on food banks, children suffered neglect and basic necessities such as food, and 5000 New Zealanders were convicted for gambling-related crime including theft and domestic violence.

"By lowering the gambling venue expenses that publicans receive, the Department of Internal Affairs is ensuring that community and sports groups receive higher grants," says Mr Stansfield.

"Sports relying on losses from gambling activities are encouraging a regressive tax system, in which the poorest are hit hardest," says Mr Stansfield.

"Sarah Ulmer should stick to cycling rather than act as a pawn for the gambling industry. She would find it a very sobering experience to visit some of the pubs in the poorer areas where destitute families feed their rent money, food money and the money for children's Christmas presents into pokie machines to see where the money she receives from pokie trusts really comes from."

"I wonder how McDonald's are feeling after being jilted by Sarah for the gambling industry."

© Scoop Media

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