Jeff Smith

Standing up for Manchester Withington

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Parliamentary Group calls for a government action on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals

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Manchester Withington MP Jeff Smith, as a member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs), has called on the government to take against the machines.

The All-Party Group, formed to investigate the impact of FOBTs on communities, launched an inquiry in June 2016 which invited policymakers, bookmakers, those with gambling addictions and others to submit evidence.

FOBTs, also known as B2s, are touch-screen roulette machines on which gamblers can play casino-style games.  Concern has grown that the machines are both highly addictive and not adequately regulated, and offer high stakes casino style gambling with gamblers at risk of losing £100 every 20 seconds.

Commenting at the report launch, Jeff said: “I’m pleased to have taken part in this important inquiry into the damaging impact these machines can have on our communities and families.

The government must now listen to the findings and take concrete action to limit the most harmful aspects of FOBTs.  That means reducing the stake and speed with which people can gamble, and giving Local Authorities the planning powers they need to prevent the clustering of betting shops.

I saw during this inquiry how Fixed Odds Betting Terminals can cause bankruptcy, family breakdown and antisocial behaviour. It’s time for the Government to act.”

You can find a copy of the full report here.

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