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Michigan Confirms Adoption Of National Problem Gambling Helpline

The gambling regulator in Michigan, the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB), strengthened its efforts toward safer gambling by introducing a new problem gambling helpline. The Board confirmed the launch of 1-800-GAMBLER, a new gambling helpline that is operated by the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG). As a result, Michigan joins a growing network of states where 1-800-GAMBLER, the National Problem Gambling Helpline, is available.

Residents from Michigan who are suffering from problem gambling, at-risk gambling, as well as their families, can call the gambling helpline and receive information, support or resources. Such callers can be referred to local treatment or professional support, an effort that reaffirms MGCB’s dedication to a safer gambling environment.

Besides a call, residents can also chat with an expert online via 1800gamblerchat.org or send a text at 800GAM. The new 1-800-GAMBLER helpline will replace the current Michigan Problem Gambling Helpline available at 1-800-270-7117. Still, the aforementioned number will continue to operate as before. Callers of 1-800-GAMBLER can reach vetted and trained experts 24/7, 365 days a year and receive information, support and guidance.

According to a statement released by the gambling regulator, operators in Michigan will be required to display the new 1-800-GAMBLER number within their responsible gaming messages. The online gambling operators are given a deadline of August 8, 2024, to update their campaigns and include the new problem gambling helpline.

Estimates of the NCPG reveal that approximately 2 million adults across the country are suffering from problem gambling. Additionally, between 4 and 6 million others may be impacted by problem gambling, including at-risk or compulsive gambling. The Council estimated that the social cost of problem gambling is an estimated $7 billion annually.

NCPG Applauds the Adoption of the Gambling Helpline Keith Whyte, NCPG’s executive director, spoke about the importance of the helpline for problem gambling. He explained that the line helps people across the country receive relevant information and gain access to support. “We applaud MGCB for taking proactive efforts to address the needs of those affected by problem gambling and for recognizing the significance of promoting 1-800-GAMBLER in Michigan,” said Whyte in conclusion.

“By adopting 1-800-GAMBLER as the statewide problem gambling helpline, the MGCB reinforces its commitment to ensuring a safe and secure gaming environment for players across the state by ensuring that resources for treatment and recovery can be accessed quickly and easily.“

Henry Williams, executive director of the MGCB Henry Williams, MGCB’s executive director, also highlighted the efficiency of the problem gambling helpline that connects people affected by gambling to trained experts who provide confidential support, resources and assistance. Finally, he said that implementation of the 1-800-GAMBLER helpline in Michigan reaffirms the gambling regulator’s dedication toward a safer gambling sector.

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