National Council on Problem Gambling to lead Problem Gambling Awareness Month

March 4, 2024
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This year's Problem Gambling Awareness Month will focus on the theme ‘every story matters' and will bring public health organizers, operators and advocacy groups together.

The National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) will lead March’s Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM), with 2024’s theme set as ‘every story matters.’

The event intends to increase problem gambling awareness among both players and industry stakeholders, promoting services for addiction treatment, prevention and recovery.  

The theme of this year taps into the personal nature of gambling addiction, championing stories of recovery while also encouraging open conversations about the struggle of addiction. The campaign intends to spotlight different methods of recovery, with PGAM attempting to ‘reshape public perception, educate communities and heighten awareness surrounding problem gambling.’ 

The theme has also been championed by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) in the lead-up to March.  

The NCPG estimates that nine million Americans are affected by problem gaming, with $14bn in annual national social costs. Furthermore, problem gambling helplines across the states have reported increased annual traffic, with usage up 55% in Ohio and also up in Florida, where it has struggled “to meet demand after sports betting apps allowed more consumers to make bets.” 

The month will see industry stakeholders, including operators, sports leagues, advocacy groups and public health organizations come together to organize and participate in workshops, awareness campaigns and events throughout March.

On the event, NCPG Executive Director Keith Whyte said, "Problem gambling is a clear and growing public health risk, affecting millions of individuals and their loved ones. Yet, our research indicates that fewer than 50% of Americans know where to get help for a gambling problem.  

“By increasing awareness and fostering an open dialogue about problem gambling, we can work to reduce the stigma surrounding gambling addiction and promote the resources available for treatment and recovery.” 

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