Think 21 Campaign Age Verification Policy Questioned by Race Books

Think 21 Policy Needs ClarityThink 21, a new underage gambling prevention policy, has recently been questioned by racing industry officials. The strategy, aimed at preventing underage gambling at race tracks and other venues, is not clear about age verification. According to sport betting operators, the age verification at race courses is difficult to enforce under the new campaign. This comes after seven gambling operators were caught taking bets from a 16-year-old at the 2019 Royal Ascot.

Regardless of the fact that the policy is rolled out at every race track in the UK, there is little clarity on how to verify the age of a customer. At least one track, Doncaster, tried to introduce special wristbands for overage gamblers. However, the attempt wasn’t successful and considered ineffective. Another issue faced by on-course betting operators is the advertised “family day out” and how to prevent underage people in a group from gambling.

Operators Implicated by Think 21

Following the case of the underage gambler at the Royal Ascot, seven operators’ licenses are being reviewed. Since preventing underage gambling is a social responsibility requirement in the UK, these on-course bookmakers face large fines. While there is a responsibility for the industry, they claim that further clarification is needed to prevent future issues.

Identity cards are no longer required in the UK after the Windrush data scandal, but the government appears to be considering re-introducing them. Yet continuing problems with data protection across the globe makes this scheme a little less viable. So, how can operators comply with regulations and still enforce controls? Training employees is the only answer.

Think 21 Bookmaker Questions

Training Needed for Policy

All gambling operators in the UK are expected to train staff in working procedures. These procedures include offering bets and ensuring compliance. Unfortunately, there is no set way to verify age and other responsibility policies. Thus, the Chairman of the British Racecourse Bookmakers’ Association has vowed to “work closely with the UK Gambling Commission” to reach a solution. In addition, the Racecourse Bookmakers Federation has confirmed similar intentions going forward.

Whether or not further training for Think 21 will help avoid further scandal is yet to be seen. For updates on this story and other gambling news, keep visiting

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Controversial Online Gambling Document from DIA

The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) in New Zealand has created a document on online gambling that has received a lot of criticism. Public health advocates have criticised this discussion document as diverting attention away from the real harm of gambling. The advocates further claimed that the report makes it easier for gambling operators in New Zealand to get better access to web-based gaming.

Digital rights proponents and have also criticised the Department of Internal Affairs for threatening to suspend access to international websites. The reduction of online gambling in New Zealand was also part of the discussion document. Those who are supportive of gambling on the internet in New Zealand believe that the reduction of web-based gambling is the wrong approach to tackling irresponsible gambling. Internet Service Providers (ISPs) such as Vodafone and Spark have also voiced out their concern over this discussion document.

DIA Online Gambling Document

The Department of Internal Affairs Suggests Geo-Blocking of Off-Shore Gambling

Opponents describe the possible ban on access to off-shore gambling websites as censorship. The document states that residents of New Zealand, as well as visitors of the country, will have restricted access to web-based gambling sites that are based abroad. The paper further states that the country’s gambling industry needs clear prosecution guidelines as well as strategies for compliance.

The notion of geo-blocking was another factor that was part of the document. However, experts have told the press that the term has been misused. The term geo-blocking often used when other content providers are blocking New Zealand residents from using their services. For example, the casino operators will have to block Kiwi players from accessing their gambling sites. However, it does not seem likely that these casino operators will willingly prevent NZ players.

More Regulations on Gambling Need to be Rolled Out

Many of the concepts that have been included in the DIA’s discussion document have received a wide range of criticism. Jordan Carter, the Chief Executive Officer of InternetNZ, thinks that the New Zealand government needs to make careful considerations regarding the bans. However, he does not believe that these actions will be useful in mitigating gambling problems in the country.

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Ireland Has the Highest Levels of Gambling Treatment Cases

In a report conducted by the Health Service Executive, the number of people who were treated for problem gambling has extremely increased. These records show that there were more than 250 instances of treatment for gambling addiction in health services in Ireland during 2018. Gambling, alcohol, and drugs are problems that have been pointed out by the Health Service Executive’s (HSE) reporting organization. The report has displayed records of about 1,750 instances of gambling spotted as the leading problem from about ten years ago.

Last year, 257 occurrences of problem gambling treatment were captured by the National Health Service. This amount is not like any other from the time it was recorded on the Health Service Executive structure. In addition, experts have said that it might likely be more by the closing of 2019. Records for one-third of this year state that there have been 82 occurrences of problem gamblers whose addiction to gambling got tended to. In 2011, it was the first year that gambling information was captured by the HSE. That year experienced the least captured number of gambling treatment instances.

Irland Has the Biggest Levels of Gambling Treatment Cases

Gambling Addiction Continues to Rise in Ireland Over Time

The Health Service Executive has cautioned that the previous information can’t be counted as exemplary of the problem on a national level. Moreso, even all-inclusive enough because reporting problem gambling and gambling harm treatment is not compulsory at the given moment. At the present time, there are about 30,000 people who are addicted to gambling in Ireland. These statistics were provided by the HSE to Louise O’Reilly. She is the spokesperson for Sinn Fein, and immediately requested that local authorities, health services, and politicians to tackle the issue for problem gambling to decrease.

Adding to the statement, she said that Ireland is already in hot water when it comes to gambling issues. The country has experienced the most gambling losses generated online per capita on a world-wide scale. Louise O’Reilly also mentioned that this matter doesn’t look like it’s shaking the pants of politicians.


Louise O’Reilly sited that the recorded data shows that young men are the ones who are most affected negatively from problem gambling activities. The health service in Ireland should put more resources into gambling problem research, treatment, education, and prevention. They need to target people who are most capable of becoming gambling addicts. She also mentions that authorities must take action in line with health service arrangements and ruling. Gambling addiction isn’t a recent issue to the industry but it has become tricky and bigger than before.

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