Greater Manchester Officials Call for More Freedom on Gambling Matters

Greater Manchester leaders found themselves under pressure to join forces and establish laws related to the fixed-odds betting terminals in the region.

Salford councillors defined the fixed-odds betting terminals as potentially dangerous and said they ruined lives, encouraged residents to overspend and pushed them into poverty.

Greater Manchester leaders have been called to require and obtain the necessary paperwork providing them with powers to set up their own laws related to the FOBT and the restrictions tourists and locals have to adhere to when engaging in cash bet games.

Despite being considered an unrealistic goal by many, the most fierce opponents of the dangerous fixed-odds betting terminals even proposed a Gambling Act valid only for Greater Manchester, to be introduced.

John Warmisham, a Leader of Salford City Council, is expected to table a motion regarding FOBT at the full council meeting slated for next week. Christopher Clarkson, the opposition Conservative councillor, supported Warmisham’s intention.

According to the motion clauses, the limits for fixed-odds betting terminals should correspond to the limit set for the fruit machines in pubs. In other words, the motion calls for a stake reduction by £98 and a limit of £2 per spin.

Various surveys suggest that Greater Manchester players bet £17 per spin on average and spend approximately £55 every time they engage in FOBT games.

Authorities tried to remedy the situation by proposing the following solution. They suggested a limit of £50 per spin to be set and players who would like to place a higher stake to obtain a permission from a staff member.

The motion also urges Greater Manchester authorities to request more powers from the government and be enabled to have the final say on the gambling matters in the region. FOBT opponents also required Mayor Paul Dennett to coordinate with the Culture Secretary John Whittingdale and the stakes to be reduced to £2 per spin. The idea of limiting the number of shops where FOBT are available was also put forward.

Council Warmisham commented on the overall situation with the gambling issue at Greater Manchester and said that urgent actions need to be taken and the negative impact of the FOBT to be limited. He added that gambling activities put families in a difficult financial situation and added that for some residents, FOBT were a reflection of their dream to win big money, so they kept putting their monthly salaries in gambling.

In conclusion, he said that each of the ten Manchester boroughs would benefit from gaining more power over the gambling matters and complying with its own licensing and gambling laws.

  • Author

Daniel Williams

Daniel Williams has started his writing career as a freelance author at a local paper media. After working there for a couple of years and writing on various topics, he found his interest for the gambling industry.
Daniel Williams
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