Gambling addiction and the compulsive nature of gaming that takes over a percentage of the players shows that gambling should not be taken lightly, as it has the potential to bring a devastating hit to a player’s life. Recently issued scandalous discovery show that the New York agency for overcoming addictions has failed to conduct a problem gambling study in the past 13 years, putting at risk the mental health of thousands of players enjoying the local gaming offerings on a daily basis.
Individuals seeking support in trying times should be encouraged to do so and their steps in the right direction are admirable. Looking for treatment when it comes to problem gambling is crucial for every individual that feels the need to take matters into their own hands and regain control over their life. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services oversees gambling addiction treatment within the borders of the state and as such, it has the responsibility to conduct regular check-ups and updates of its approach.
Last Problem Gambling Study Took Place in 2006
The last time the agency inspected the field and its problem gambling rates was back in 2006, more than a decade ago. Amid a rapidly developing field that is planning to make sports betting reality in the foreseeable future, players should have a reliable gambling addiction program to seek support from in times of need. Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli stated that the agency leaves something to be desired when it comes to problem gambling treatment programs currently available.
An improvement to the status quo could be achieved via an extensive study into the gaming habits of residents and regular players across New York. It would be able to provide the agency with up to date data, but as it became clear the last time this happened was in 2006. Such a period of inaction could have a devastating impact on players currently struggling with gambling addiction and the negative consequences it has not only on their own life but also on their loved ones and close friends.
Gambling addiction often goes unnoticed, as people consider it normal behavior or a spare time activity they could put an end to any time. In reality, the cash they pour into the gaming field could be spiraling out of control until they feel the need to face the truth and seek addiction treatment help. This essential now more than ever, with New York’s four commercial casino venues and the saturated offerings it has. Del Lago Resort, Tioga Downs, Rivers (Schenectady), and Resorts World Catskills reign over the field and their players deserve adequate protection.
Sports Betting Expansion Projected to Launch Soon
The said four venues launched operation in the years since 2013, meaning that the 2006 estimations and information available about the gaming habits of players is not up to date. In addition to land-based gambling operation, January brought the news that state lawmakers are making a move towards introducing sports betting almost a year after the PASPA was overruled by the United States Supreme Court.
Players are eagerly anticipating this move, as New York’s performance could surpass Nevada’s sports wagering revenue. The Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services confirmed that it will change its approach and conduct a new study observing problem gambling tendencies. This is expected to happen in the upcoming months amid gaming expansion in the state. At the moment the agency offers some 20 outpatient programs that do not require the patient to be admitted, as well as six inpatient locations providing help.
In addition to that, there is also the Queens Center for Excellence offering more information and training to individuals working in the gaming industry, that experience a high risk of problem gambling behavior. It also offers individuals an assessment of their current gambling habits. The new study would have to be done before the sports wagering expansion that is expected to take place in the next few months so that lawmakers have a better perspective on the current situation.