poker machines

By Jackson Russell

In a further stance against poker machines, Mitchell Shire Council is calling on the State Government to introduce warning signs on all poker machines in the state.

Deputy Mayor David Atkinson moved the motion, which was seconded by Cr Annie Goble, and passed unanimously.

The stand comes after council made a submission to the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation oppposing the application for an additional 20 machines at Hogan’s Hotel in Wallan.

Cr Atkinson said pokies were the most addictive form of gambling and there was a fundamental issue with the product.

“Electronic gaming machines are designed to keep you playing and programmed to lose money. Stronger regulation is needed to make our community healthier,” he said.

“There are a lot of people, often the ones who can’t afford it, that get addicted to these machines. These people need to have in from of their face that the machines are designed to make them lose.”

Cr Atkinson likened the messaged to those used on retail tobacco packaging in Australia.

“These warnings provide a clear message about the harmful health consequences of tobacco products,” he said.

“Mandating public health product warning messages stating, ‘this machine is designed to keep you playing and programmed for you to lose money’, clearly visible on each machine to anyone who is using would ensure those using the machines are provided with evidence-based warning messages.”

Cr Goble applauded the motion.

“Sadly, I believe the power of poker machine operators is too great and this outcome is highly unlikely,” she said.

“I think it will be fought against and we could possibly compromise with signs in venues or bathrooms.”

1 COMMENT

  1. Won’t matter at all. By entering the venue and consciously sitting at the machine you fully intend to play it!
    Only by removing them and adding more palatable alternatives at community centres, senior citizens clubs, etc. to while away the time in like minded friendships or in an absorbing craft or recreation will you combat the “comfort” and passing of idle time that the venue and the machines afford the lonely.

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