Poker Machine Harm Media Response

Questions and Responses

Re research into poker machine harm.

Why is council taking part in the study?

The City of Monash was identified as a key partner in this research project and was approached by Deakin University to support this grant application. This was due to our state wide leadership in the prevention of gambling-harm and track record in successful project work, policy and advocacy.  It is important to take part in this study given the high levels of gambling harm in the municipality. The research findings will guide Council actions for harm prevention in the future.  Findings and specific information about our community’s engagement with electronic gaming machines and other gambling products will help us to work towards better health outcomes for all residents. 

Does it have a stance on pokies?

Monash Council is a fierce advocate against the proliferation of poker machines in our neighbourhoods and we are a state and national leader in campaigning for action and change. We consider gambling to be a public health issue which impacts on individuals, families and communities.

We have made an ongoing commitment to limit gambling-related harm, through the City of Monash Public Health Approach to Gambling Policy Statement 2016-2020. For more info: https://www.monash.vic.gov.au/About-Us/Council/Our-Organisation/Advocacy/Gambling-Policy-Statement-2016-2020

We are a leading member of the Alliance for Gambling Reform, a national collaboration of organisations with a shared concern about the harmful impacts of gambling in Australia.

This alliance grew from the 2014 campaign “Enough Pokies”, initiated and led by Monash Council comprising 38 local councils, the Salvation Army and the Inter-Church Taskforce on Gambling to call for better protection for vulnerable communities from inappropriate placement of pokies machines.

Do you have figures on the number of pokies in the municipality and the amount lost for each venue?

You can find this information at the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation website https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/resources/data-and-research/gambling-data/gaming-expenditure-local-area

Why is it important to look at and take part in this sort of thing?

Monash Council views gambling harm as a significant public health issue. More than $109 million was lost through electronic gaming machines in 2016/17, ranking Monash as the 6th in Victoria in terms of losses. It’s important to participate in this study to help us develop grassroots responses to reduce gambling-related harm.

 Issued: Wednesday, 7 March 2018.
To: Monash Leader.
Quoting: Mayor, Councillor Paul Klisaris