My question is for the minister representing
the Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming
and Liquor Regulation.
It was reported over the weekend that Crown
Casino and possibly others in the gambling
industry are applying for licences for so-called
skills-based gaming machines.
Apparently Crown and others are looking for
new ways to get people hooked on gambling
and are turning their sights on the new generation
of young people who find computer games more
interesting than repeatedly pressing a button,
although we have discovered that you do not
even have to do that at Crown.
Can the government confirm, as was reported,
that the Victorian Commission for Gambling
and Liquor Regulation is working secretly
with Crown to trial the new video-game-style
gambling machines at Crown Casino in Melbourne?
I thank Dr Ratnam for her question.
I do not agree with the premise that somehow
this is some kind of secret collusion between
the state government and Crown, nor do I accept
the premise of her question that somehow Crown
is engaged in some behaviour that is contrary
to the legislation under which it operates.
Nonetheless, I will accept the question on
behalf of the minister in the other place
and seek a response within the allocated time
line under standing orders.
Minister, given what we know about gambling
and the harm and destruction it causes our
community, what we know about the gambling
industry and its predatory nature and what
we know about video games and their addictive
qualities too, will the government finally
stand up to Crown Casino, stand up for the
community and particularly stand up for young
people who will be targeted and rule out any
introduction of these so-called skills-based
gaming machines in Victoria?
I thank Dr Ratnam for her further supplementary
Again, it gives me no pleasure to refuse to
accept the premise of her question.
She has attacked gamers; she has attacked
people who choose to undertake legally provided
opportunities to gamble in the state of Victoria.
I appreciate and understand that there are
people with addictive natures and personalities
It is not left alone to gaming of course.
People can suffer from substance abuse and
a range of issues that we as a government
need to support and provide assistance to
to ensure that they do not suffer in an egregious
That does not necessarily lend itself to the
construct of Dr Ratnam’s question, but again
I will ask the minister in the other place
to respond accordingly.