It’s About The Health of Communities: Phasing Out Poker Machines From Pubs And Clubs

A Rebecca White Labor Government will phase out 2,375 poker machines from 97 Tasmanian pubs and clubs by 2023.

Poker machines will be limited to casinos.

Gambling addiction is a serious health issue.

The 2011 Social and Economic Impact Study into gambling estimated the social costs of problem gambling at between $37 million to $184 million a year – that is a cost that is shared by each and every Tasmanian.

The harmful impacts of poker machine gambling are widespread. For every person who is harmed by their own gambling, seven other people are affected.

Last year Tasmanians lost $110 million on poker machines. Under Labor that money would be spent in local businesses supporting jobs and families in communities.

Evidence shows that if just half of those losses from poker machines were diverted to other parts of the economy, more than 180 full time jobs would be created.

The removal of poker machines from pubs and clubs will have widespread benefits for the health of communities.

Labor will ensure pubs and clubs are able to make the transition to alternative types of business and revenue streams.

Labor will provide up to $55 million in transition funding.

This will include:

  • $20 million in transitional support for venues that choose to surrender their poker machines prior to 2023.
  • A $25 million loan pool to provide long term, low-interest loans to businesses transitioning to new business models.
  • $500,000 in grants to sporting clubs.
  • $500,000 for business development advice.
  • $4 million for staff retraining and professional development.

Labor will also establish a Club Sustainability Fund of $5 million for clubs to access beyond 2023 to ensure important clubs, like RSLs, can continue to provide services to their community.

With Tasmania’s gaming deed with Federal Hotels stating that we must give notice to vary arrangements by July 2018, this is a once-in-a-generation chance to make the right decision and put people before profits.

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Only a Rebecca White Majority Labor Government will be about
Putting People First.