Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Membership of the Ministerial Expert Advisory Group on Gambling announced

Joint Media Release with:

  • Bill Shorten MP, Assistant Treasurer

Twenty-two people have been selected to advise the Australian Government on its gambling reforms through a new expert panel.

The Ministerial Expert Advisory Group on Gambling, chaired by Professor Peter Shergold AC, will provide specialist and technical implementation advice and play an important role in assisting the Government to deliver its gambling reforms.

The Government has invited 22 representatives to join the Ministerial Expert Advisory Group from:

  • problem gambling counselling and support services;
  • clubs, hotels, casinos and gaming machine manufacturers;
  • the Liquor Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union; and
  • research and academic institutions that specialise in understanding problem gambling behaviour and harm minimisation measures.

The group will consider key issues such as the implementation of a best practice, full pre-commitment scheme on poker machines, the roll out of poker machine dynamic warning and cost of play displays and establishing ATM withdrawal limits in venues with poker machines (excluding casinos).

The group will be guided by the latest evidence on gambling and will seek advice from other stakeholders where necessary.

The group will meet for the first time in early November. They will provide advice to the Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs and the Assistant Treasurer regularly, through the Secretariat and the Chair.

Tomorrow the Council of Australian Government’s (COAG) Select Council on Gambling Reform, which includes Treasurers, Ministers responsible for gambling regulation, and Ministers responsible for community services, will meet for the first time to develop national solutions to minimise harm from problem gambling.

The Australian Government has committed to work with the states and territories, industry and the community sector to progress a national response to the recommendations of the Productivity Commission Report on Gambling.

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The Productivity Commission estimates that there are between 80,000 and 160,000 problem gamblers in Australia. In addition there are between 230,000 and 350,000 people at moderate risk.

Problem gambling destroys lives – not only the life of the problem gambler but also the lives of their families and friends.

The Government’s national reforms will help limit the damaging effects of problem gambling, while continuing to let thousands of Australians enjoy recreational gambling in pubs and clubs.

Ministerial Expert Advisory Group Membership

Chair: Professor Peter Shergold AC, Macquarie Group Foundation Professor, Centre for Social Impact, University of NSW.

The Government has invited the following people to join the Ministerial Advisory Group on Gambling:

  • Ms Cheryl Vardon, Australasian Gaming Council
  • Mr Anthony Ball, Clubs Australia
  • Mr John Whelan, Australian Hotels Association
  • Mr Chris Downy, Australasian Casino Association
  • Mr Ross Ferrar, Gaming Technologies Association
  • Mr Rohan Martin, ATM Industry Reference Group
  • Mr John Duffy, International Gaming Technology
  • Mr John Bresnan, Crown Limited
  • Mr David Curry, Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group
  • Mr Simon Schrapel, ACOSS and UnitingCare Wesley, Adelaide
  • Dr Mark Zirnsak, Victorian InterChurch Gambling Taskforce
  • Major Brad Halse, Salvation Army Southern Territory
  • Ms Rosemary Hambledon, Relationships Australia South Australia
  • Mr Barry Sheehan, Centacare Toowoomba
  • Ms Kate Roberts, Gambling Impact Society
  • Ms Louise Tarrant, Liquor Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union
  • Dr Paul Delfabbro, Associate Professor in Psychology, University of Adelaide
  • Professor Nerilee Hing, Director, Centre for Gambling Education and Research, Southern Cross University
  • Professor Alex Blaszczynski, Chair in Psychology, University of Sydney
  • Mr Ashley Gordon, Centre for Gambling Education and Research, Southern Cross University
  • Dr Charles Livingstone, Deputy Head, Department of Health Social Science, Monash University