Saturday, 6 October
CALL FOR POKIES FREEZE
PROFITING A QUARTER OF A BILLION DOLLARS FROM THE COMMUNITY SHOULD BE
There are almost 4,000 pokies in the
local government area (LGA), the highest concentration in this state, yet clubs
and hotels are applying to install even more pokies.
has one of the lowest incomes in the state but highest expenditure on pokies:
2004 clubs and hotels in
made total profit of $286,735,565
LGA has one poker machine per 36 adult, NSW average is one per 51 adult
spends per pokies is $74,399, 50% higher than NSW average of $47,423
Fairfield LGA spend per adult was $2,093 compared to NSW average of $923
Currently there are 3922 pokies
In the past 18 months six
local clubs and hotels have applied for an additional 122 pokies.
“These pokies palaces
already leech almost $287m from local residents each year, that’s over a
quarter of a billion dollars we’ve lost to pokies” said Fairfield Councillor
Cr Ngo says it’s appalling
that the clubs and hotels are submitting applications to increase pokies in
their premises despite admitting in their Social Impact Assessment (SIA) that
the additional pokies will lead to more problem gamblers.
says the argument of increase local jobs and taxes to government does not stack
up to the harm cause by problem gambling. According
to local community
groups gambling has led to serious “additional costs to the community
including domestic violence, family breakdown, poverty, child abuse –
psychological and physical abuse and neglect, elderly abuse, malnutrition,
increased crime, mental health and depression”.
Currently the Department of
Gaming and Racing is assessing applications for an additional 90 pokies.
Cr Ngo has written to the
Department of Gaming and Racing opposing any further increase in pokies for the
“I call on the Department
to establish a freeze on the number of pokies in Fairfield
, effective immediately” he said.
Fairfield Councillor Thang Ngo –
0410 33 88 33 (m) - More