6 May 2012

Casino says it's trying to avoid gambling harms

4:50 am on 6 May 2012

Auckland Mayor Len Brown says Sky City Casino is not doing enough to help problem gamblers, but the casino says it is doing everything it can to prevent harm from problem gambling at that venue.

New Gambling Commission figures reveal a tripling in the number of problem gamblers identified at the casino in the past three years, but in the same period the casino's exclusions of problem gamblers increased by only a quarter.

"A harm minimisation officer, pre-paid cards, options relating to being able to take your earnings, rather than re-invest them - all those issues need to be appropriately implemented in the casino," says Mr Brown.

Executives at the casino - which is doing a deal with the Government to build to a convention centre in return for being allowed greater numbers of gaming machines - say it has better systems now for detecting problem gamblers.

General manager of group services, Grainne Troute, says staff will intervene if they see someone has a problem with gambling or alcohol.

And she says the figures may indicate that they are now able to better detect people who may have issues.