Methodist delight at decision to drop the supercasino

by Richard on February 27, 2008

From The Methodist Church News Service

The Methodist Church welcomes today’s Government announcement that they will not grant a supercasino licence. Proposals for supercasinos, also known as regional casinos, have been strongly opposed by The Methodist Church.

Alison Jackson, Team Leader for Public Issues in the Methodist Church, said “we are delighted to hear that the Government is not intending to grant a licence for a supercasino. We are pleased that the Government has listened to reason and decided against building a massive gambling complex with unlimited jackpot fruit machines in a deprived area. The Methodist Church calls on the Government to support other ways of regenerating those communities most in need.”

The Methodist Church will continue to monitor the impact of the 16 new large and small casinos that will now open as planned. The Church will keep pressure on the government and the industry to do all they can to protect players and support people who have a gambling problem.

Alison says “the new casinos will be a cause of concern for many people, not least those who live in the neighbourhoods where the casinos are going to be built. We urge the casino operators and the licensing authorities to do all in their power to encourage responsible gaming, and to help those in need.”

The new casinos will be subject to a three-year evaluation period to monitor their impact. The Methodist Church is demanding that this time period should start when the casinos open and take three years of full operation into account. The premises will take time to build and fit out, so counting the three years from the date on which the licences are awarded could mean that the casinos have been open for only a few weeks when the review takes place.

Against the Odds…? (pdf) is a briefing on gambling published jointly by the Methodist Church and the Salvation Army.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1

Larry B 02.27.08 at 5:04 am

This is good news. I only wish the church would use stronger language. When they say things like this

“The Methodist Church calls on the Government to support other ways of regenerating those communities most in need.”

They are making a tacit admission that gambling can regenerate a community in need. This is flatly wrong in my opinion and they should state that gambling is not an option for regenerating communities and the government should find other ways to aid communities.

2

Paul Martin 02.27.08 at 7:46 am

The outcome is much better than the original Blair proposals and for that the Methodist Church and Salvation Army deserve much credit.

However, let’s be clear the government has sanctioned a significant increase in gambling with these 16 casinos. The government deserves no credit but condemnation for this. I find their position of just doing a bit less of a crime than they had previously intended.

The battle goes on. I hope these shameful constructs attract the vandals rather than the mormal targets.

3

DH 02.27.08 at 3:07 pm

Wow, this is great news. Prayer and action do change things. :)

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