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$3.5 billion class action lawsuit against OLGC proposed

12 June 2008

ONTARIO -- As reported by the CBC News: "A $3.5-billion proposed class-action lawsuit has been launched on behalf of thousands of addicted gamblers who allege they asked to be barred from Ontario's casinos, but were still allowed in.

"The suit was filed against the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation on Tuesday in Toronto, claiming that the corporation did not do enough for those who signed up for 'self-exclusion,' a program that allows people to have themselves banned from casinos so that they can curb their ruinous gambling habits.

"None of the allegations has been proven in court and a statement of defence has not yet been filed.

"Those who sign up for the program are photographed and registered, and their information is stored in binders at every provincial casino. If they are caught trying to enter a casino, they can be arrested for trespassing.

"But gamblers who spoke with CBC News on condition of anonymity said the program doesn't work. One woman said she registered for the program, but her gambling addiction led her back to a casino soon after.

"...The OLG has argued in the past that it is ultimately up to the gamblers themselves to stay away from casinos, although the corporation has expressed interest in obtaining facial recognition technology to improve its screening process."

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