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Pokies Built for Addiction

Andrea Dawkins

Andrea Dawkins  -  Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Tags: Pokies, Gambling Industry

Andrea Dawkins MP | Greens Gaming spokesperson

The documentary 'Ka-Ching! Pokie Nation', that aired on ABC last night reinforced what we have known for many years, the odds are stacked heavily against those who play.

Poker machines that have proliferated in Tasmania are built for addiction and high losses.

The psychology used to keep problem gamblers coming back is playing the players with the machine return percentage set at the lowest possible mark at around 85%.

Last night's documentary referred to pokies as 'electronic morphine', and it's not just our people who are lost in the addiction. It's casino moguls, clubs, pubs and our own state government.

The government urgently needs to remove the leech that is pokies in our communities. They are bleeding disadvantaged Tasmanians dry and harming families.

The biggest beneficiary of pokies in Tasmania are Federal Hotels and the Farrell family. The Farrell's have a personal wealth of $463M and are moving steadily up the BRW Rich List off the back of low income Tasmanians.

It's not good enough for the government to simply surrender to Federal Hotels'. Their responsibility is to the people of Tasmania, the people who are suffering from this insidious addiction.