Ontario Invests $9m to Promote Responsible Gambling

Article by Simon Young
iGaming Ontario Welcomes
Last Updated: May 6th, 2024 Share On Your Network:

Responsible gambling and the emphasis on keeping players safe when they bet online is of the utmost importance to any reputable casino or sports bookmaker. The government of Ontario is fully committed to ensuring betting platforms protect players with a three-year plan to reinforce strict measures to keep them out of harm’s way.

Officials promised to invest $9m during the Discovery Conference, an event held by the Responsible Gambling Council each year. The aim is to provide transparent and accessible help for those who might be at risk of problems owing to irresponsible gambling. It also plans to educate people on the dangers that it could pose.

This is seen as a positive step in the right direction by everybody in the industry who recognizes that the work to keep everybody safe can’t ever stop, ensuring that dynamic changes are made to match the ever-changing online gambling landscape.

As a national trade association for the country, the Canadian Gaming Association installed a program to regulate marketing campaigns that casinos and sports bookmakers use, as well as printing guidelines for those companies to comply with to make sure responsible gambling is part of their new program launch.

Other steps have been taken to improve the player experience and keep their mental and financial well-being in check. For instance, iGaming Ontario now has a self-exclusion option for those wanting to limit their time at a casino.

Why These Measures Are Crucial

Control and presenting the message to players that they can quit whenever they like and that it should never go beyond fun is integral to the program and the subsequent investment we’re seeing from the state of Ontario.

Gambling addiction is a problem in every country that allows its citizens to spend their money and target wins. Issues like this are precisely why so many countries and companies need to implement strong measures. Sometimes, however, this takes regional or even national intervention.

According to studies in 2022, over 300,000 were deemed at risk of at least moderate gambling problems. When you consider that, not only is it likely even more people have gambled since then, but almost 66% of the Canadian adult population gambles in a given year. For this reason, the right approach is monitoring the situation and making the resources available to help those people.

Regulation of the online gambling industry has been ongoing for a while throughout certain Canadian provinces, and RG accreditation is awarded to platforms that prove they conduct their operations responsibly for the safety and security of the player.

Betsquare not only provides in-depth reviews of the best online platforms to place your bets across several countries, including those accessible in Ontario, but it also puts a keen emphasis on ensuring that when you do bet it doesn’t harm your personal life and allows your experience to remain fun and in your own hands. 

Investment Reaction

Of course, this is big news in Ontario and Canada broadly. The Responsible Gambling Council’s spokesperson said the investment can “further enhance its consumer education campaigns, expand community outreach programming, and build partnerships with local community groups to deliver its message to more Ontarians.”

Shelley White, the CEO of the Responsible Gambling Council, stated: “Ontario has long been a champion for responsible gambling and this investment into prevention education and programming and today’s announcement is a game-changer. This demonstrates Ontario is the Canadian leader in promoting responsible play, minimizing harm and creating a strong, sustainable online gambling market.”

White continued: “We applaud and thank the Ontario government for this welcome and historic investment into responsible play. We know online gambling comes with unique risks and this funding will have a positive and meaningful impact on the lives of so many Ontarians by providing them with the resources and programming to help keep them safe and build a culture of responsible play in this new environment.”

Such meaningful investment at the government level means casinos and sports bookmakers can continue to provide their service, enjoyed by so many across Canada, but do so in a harm-free and engaging way with the customer to ensure that they don’t fall on any financial or mental hard times as a result of their gambling experience. 

As a non-profit organization, the Responsible Gambling Council wants to benefit from seeing fewer people suffer from problematic behaviours that drive their gambling addiction. Getting to the root of the problem is the first step to recognizing that a problem can be solved and that betting doesn’t need to take over somebody’s life.

It’s interesting to see what the next moves will be in terms of safer gambling measures at the provincial level and how that will display itself to the broader public. Efforts can’t be stopped to make sure everybody is safe, and the gambling companies are rightfully becoming increasingly aware of their responsibility to ensure their members are safe while at the same time passing on the message that the public needs to be self-aware about the signs of bad gambling behaviours.

If you want to read through the Responsible Gambling pages on the Betsquare website to better educate yourself on the issues others have faced and when to stop, you can do so here on our website.