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Aussie Gambling Addicts Could be Tagged

17 June 2002

AUSTRALIA – As reported by the Sydney Herald Sun: "Hi-tech wristbands could soon be used to keep gambling addicts out of poker machine venues.

"The electronic device would trigger an alarm as problem gamblers entered any of the state's 536 pokie parlours.

"…Pokies giant Tattersall's yesterday said the plan was `worth genuine consideration'.

"Anti-gambling advocate, Rev Tim Costello said the technology could help gamblers determined to beat their addiction.

"…Under the proposal, the wrist or ankle tags would be worn voluntarily by gambling addicts but could only be removed using special tools.

"Mr Costello said the existing self-exclusion program, which relies on gaming staff identifying addicts from photographs, was unworkable.

"A recent Herald Sun investigation exposed serious flaws in the self-exclusion program, which has a membership of more than 3000 Victorian pokies addicts.

"…Crown Casino spokesman Gary O'Neill said the concept would prove counter-productive…"

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