Calls for Northern Ireland To Overhaul Gambling Laws

March 8th, 2011

Alex Attwood, Northern Ireland’s Social Development Minister, has put for the idea of reforms to the gambling laws that he says are outdated and in need of an overhaul.
Attwood stated, “The current regulatory system is fragmented. Close supervision of the industry is needed to keep crime out of gambling, protect the vulnerable and promote fairness. I welcome views on creating a single licensing body with new powers to impose penalties on gambling operators for breaches of licensing conditions.”

The minister also commented on his intentions, “My utt most priority will be the public interest; striking a balance between developing gambling as a leisure pursuit and minimizing its harmful effects.”

A few of the issues brought forth by the Social Development Minister to be included for the purposes of consultation on the subject were, high stakes gaming which would undergo no significant change. Other concerns such as outdated provisions received the suggestion that relaxing or removing certain outdated gambling restrictions and licensing conditions would bring the law more in line with current gambling expectations and convients.

Opinions are being sought regarding regulation and enforcement with the idea of setting up a single licensing body to issue licenses and monitor the gambling industry. Enforcement responsibilities shared with police authorities will be also receive in-depth consideration.

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