Smith Backs Charity’s Call To Educate Teens On Risks Of Gambling

29 September 2010

SNP MEP Alyn Smith, an alternate member of the Parliament's Culture and Education Committee has today (Wednesday­) thrown his weight behind GamCare’s campaign, which calls on schools to warn teenagers about the risks of gambling in their social education curriculum.

A recent report by the charity claims that 60,000, 12 to 15-year-olds, are gambling at least once a week. GamCare argue that more support in schools about the issue has become just as important as education on alcohol abuse, safe sex and smoking.

Smith said: “Thousands of teenagers across the UK are developing gambling habits with some playing truant as a result. Westminster has relaxed rules on internet gambling and advertising and as a result of these lax laws, gambling addiction has soared, particularly amongst society’s most vulnerable. Overseas gambling websites often lack safeguards and young teenagers are getting hooked.

“Prevention is better than cure and the best way to do this is to educate at an early age. Gambling is a form of addiction, just like alcohol and drugs, hence children should be educated about the pitfalls to prevent problems later in life.”