Campaigns. It is important that I continue to know the strength of feeling on an issue and I prefer to respond to every inquiry, but the sheer size of campaign correspondence means that it is hard to justify to the tax payer the cost and time taken for individual written replies, so regrettably I will no longer reply to every item of campaign correspondence.  I will  post a response to the campaign on the "Responses to campaigns" page of my website.

I am sorry to do this, as it is rather impersonal, but can see no other way of maintaining a good service for all my constituents unless I approach campaigns this way.

02 MAY 2018

Gaming Machines

Thank you for taking the time to email me about fixed odds betting terminals.

I will not be supporting any moves that allow high stakes fixed odds betting terminals to continue to destroy lives. The Treasury needs to look at the long term financial & personal cost of the catastrophic harms to individuals, families and society.

I hope the following information on this topic from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport is of interest:

Fixed odds betting terminals are important to the economic viability of many betting shops, which currently employ around 53,000 people nationally. However, we cannot ignore the evidence that has been presented on the potential impact these types of gaming machines can have on individuals and wider communities.
There has been a shift in attitudes within the industry, with more focus on social responsibility. However, Ministers are concerned that self-regulation has had a limited impact in tackling problem gambling and there are still large numbers of higher-staking machines in accessible locations, often in more deprived areas, where it is possible to lose a large amount of money very quickly.
In 2016 the Government launched a review into gaming machines and social responsibility, with Ministers concluding that further action is necessary to strike the right balance between enabling people to bet responsibly and ensuring consumers and communities are protected. A consultation on proposals for changes to Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures closed on 23 January and the Government is now considering the feedback received.

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