Letter: Gambling policy undermined

Gambling policy undermined

Sir: Your report "Casinos turn the tables after Lottery setback" (12 July) makes no reference to the Gaming Board's call for an independent review of gambling. This a matter of some urgency and must involve all aspects of gambling, including betting.

There is conclusive evidence that the casualties from gambling are largely determined by the total amount of gambling occurring and the social pressures encouraging excess. Officially, the policy still is to provide gambling facilities on the basis of unstimulated demand. In practice, this has been undermined by the last government's piecemeal "deregulation". This was done without serious consideration of the long-term consequences for punters and their families. It is vital that there should be a coherent public policy on gambling.

Dr E MORAN FRCP FRCPsych

Chairman

The National Council on Gambling

London N14

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