This week, Gamcare released its Gambling Related Harm: Core Messages and Financial Harm Toolkit, which is aimed at organisations helping customers affected by gambling harm, including gambling operators, financial institutions and debt advice agencies. The toolkit sets out Gamcare’s core messages and draws together information on the various tools customers can be signposted to for assistance controlling their gambling, including safety tips that can be provided to customers who do not wish to stop gambling completely.
The toolkit, which is the result of a cross-sector collaboration initiative by Gamcare and the first of its kind in the UK, is intended to be a comprehensive guide for organisations across the UK to help them recognise, support and refer customers experiencing gambling-related financial harms and provide consistent communications across all points of the customer journey.
The materials draw together best practice and are informed by the experiences both of those who have been harmed by gambling and experts from each sector, in order to tangibly improve customer interactions in future. The toolkit contains referral pathway guidelines tailored to each sector and guidance on training staff to provide them with the confidence to support customers who are impacted by gambling harms.
Gambling related financial harm is an important area of focus for Gamcare, which reports that 70% of callers to the National Gambling Helpline mention some level of gambling debt and/or financial hardship. Gamcare’s progress in this area has now seen eight banks offer customers the option to place blocks and ‘cooling off’ periods on gambling transactions to assist in controlling their gambling.
Gamcare hopes that the toolkit will help frontline staff in key industries provide effective, sensitive support to customers in order to ensure they receive the help they need.
Anna Hemmings, CEO at GamCare, said:
“People struggling with gambling present in different ways and often opportunities are missed to provide the support they need. Ensuring that frontline staff are equipped to help and refer to appropriate support is a huge step in improving the outcomes these customers experience. This toolkit, with the support of businesses, charities and gambling operators themselves, is vital to putting those pathways in place.”