Pennsylvania regulator upgrades self-exclusion tools to combat problem gambling

July 13, 2023
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State residents suffering from gambling disorders can access a more user-friendly system for help.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has launched an updated system to assist individuals statewide who need help because of problem gambling. The PCGB has created user-friendly online tools and three additional features that make it easier for players who want to self-exclude from engaging in gaming activities.

Pennsylvania started its self-exclusion program in 2006. The initial program gave residents the ability to opt out of entering and gambling at the state’s casinos. Eleven years later, the state passed the Gaming Expansion Act, which took the program further, giving residents self-exclusion capabilities for iGaming.

With the recent launch, the PGCB has added three more self-exclusion programs related to online gaming, truck stop video gaming terminals (VGTs) and online fantasy sports.

The board further explained the updated self-exclusion program in an official statement, “While a person is self-excluded, gaming facilities and operators in the Commonwealth must refuse wagers from, and deny any gaming privileges to, that person.

“If an individual on a list is found to be participating in gaming activities in Pennsylvania, they may be charged with criminal trespass and any gambling winnings are confiscated.”

In addition to the added program, the board has simplified the enrollment process. Players who want to opt out of access to gambling services can sign up online to participate in self-exclusion programs.

Casinos and operators statewide have also pitched in to aid the board in assisting its residents. According to the director of the Office of Compulsive and Problem Gambling (OCPG), Pennsylvania’s casinos are currently offering employee training to educate team members on the warning signs of potential problem gambling.

Both operators and casinos have developed outreach programs to aid players and encourage safe and responsible gambling, the OCPG said.

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