It is estimated that there are approximately 10 million people in the United States who have some kind of a gambling issue. This is about 2.6% of the entire population. North American Foundation for Gambling Addiction reports that in terms of money, this is around $6 billion of the cost each year for the economy and citizens. Even though public funding for problem gambling was as much as $73 million in 2016, gambling is not federally regulated. It is regulated by each state, but there are ten states that do not offer any public funding gambling assistance.
Gambling does not only affect individuals but whole families as well. Sometimes the problems can go undetected for many years until money becomes the main issue. However, it is possible to get back on the right track, and gambling problems do not have to be something that permanently affects people’s lives. That is why there are many organizations in the US dedicated to solving this national problem.
American Gaming Association
This association advocates for responsible gaming – a concept comprising multiple policies and requirements that apply to all aspects of the gaming industry to ensure that the highest standard is met and that players experience a safe and fair gambling environment so that the negative consequences of gambling and gaming can be minimized. This can be done by regular compliance verification, applying legal and regulatory policies, ensuring data and privacy protection, the prevention of underage gambling and the protection of vulnerable customers. Responsible gaming should be taken very seriously so that players can experience both winning and safe gaming.
National Council on Problem Gambling
NCPG offers a 24-hour confidential national helpline, open to both gamblers and their families. They also include chat and text services. NCPG focuses on education, treatment, enforcement, prevention and research on problem gambling and gambling. They also hold annual National Conferences on Problem Gambling when about 500 recovering gamblers, industry executives, regulators, counselors and legislators gather for four days to attend pre-conference workshops and the main conference. NCPG’s Holiday Lottery Campaign discourages adults from giving lottery tickets to underage children as holiday gifts because many gamblers report that this is what got them into gaming in the first place. Their Risk Education for Athletes Program’s mission is to provide education for athletes of all ages about both the professional and personal risks of gambling and similar behavior.
This is an organization of men and women dedicated to helping compulsive gamblers by sharing their experience, hope, and strength. They have only one requirement – a desire to stop gambling. Gamblers Anonymous are self-supporting through their own contributions, and anyone can become a member for free.