Review of gambling laws by UK government to be postponed until May 2022
According to the Guardian, the UK Government's review of the gambling industry is expected to be postponed until May 2022.
It comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson's future is uncertain, despite the fact that he is known to support gambling reform.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) announced proposals to reform gambling laws in December 2020, citing concerns about gambling addiction and children being exposed, via advertising and sponsorship, to gambling.
A White Paper was supposed to be released before the end of 2021, but it was pushed back to early 2022. The initial postponement occurred as a result of a cabinet reshuffle and the replacement of John Wittingdale with Chris Philp as Gambling Minister.
Current circumstances within the government impact the review, according to Carolyn Harris, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Gambling Related Harm.
"Of course time must be taken to gather the evidence to ensure the right reforms are put in place," Harris said, "but the gambling review was announced over two years ago."
"Every day of delay leads to further gambling-related harm while the industry rakes in profits. The government must not let its own internal problems stand in the way of much-needed reforms for this country – it is time for action."
The importance of urgency was also emphasized by Liz Ritchie, Co-Founder of the charity Gambling With Lives, who stated that the White Paper must be published as soon as possible.
"Someone takes their life every day in the UK because of gambling, so we simply cannot wait until May to see this white paper," Ritchie said. "How many more families need to be shattered by highly addictive gambling products and predatory gambling industry practices before the government acts?"
By fLEXI tEAM