Last week was one of significant importance for the Canadian sports and gaming industry, as the country has officially introduced wagering on individual sporting events. On Friday, Windsor West MP Brian Masse made a public appearance at Caesars Windsor Casino and welcomed the new offering. He is now eager to see how the provinces will implement the change.
The legalization of single-sports betting is possible due to the enactment of Bill C-218, which now amends the Criminal Code to allow such wagering. The legislation was introduced by Tory MP Kevin Waugh, and it has been passed at the Canadian Senate on June 22, 2021, a week later received Royal Assent. The bill was officially enacted as a law by the federal government on August 27.
On Friday, at Caesars Windsor Casino, Mr. Masse along with members of Unifor Local 444 officially welcomed single-sports betting in the country. The Windsor West MP claimed that Liberals have taken credit for the passing of the legislation, but in his words, Mr. Waugh should also be praised for his contribution of introducing the bill.
According to Mr. Masse, single-event wagering would have arrived even sooner if it was not for a lack of support from the federal Liberals along with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The MP claimed that the federal government has tried to push down the efforts to introduce single-sports betting but as he put it in the end the people have won.
Dana Dunphy, a chairperson for Caesars Windsor Casino workers represented by Unifor Local 444, praised Mr. Masse for supporting the casino and the staff through the years. According to her, the introduction of single-sports betting would generate more job positions at the casino and greater betting variety for patrons. She says that this way the casino would be more competitive as it is bordering with three US casinos.
Labour leader Ken Lewenza Sr. was also at the Friday meeting and he also praised Mr. Masse for his contribution and support of the region. Mr. Lewenza Sr. said that he and the MP have discussed the issue over a decade ago. He also credited Mr. Masse and the New Democrats for their hard work on bringing single-sports betting.
Letter to the Prime Minister
Shortly before the official announcement from the federal government about the enactment of Bill C-218, Ms. Masse sent a letter of request to Mr. Trudeau’s office. In the letter, Mr. Masse was urging the Prime Minister to accelerate the legal process and enact the legislation as a law. He also explained that there was no reason for the delay from the federal government.
Not long after Ms. Masse’s letter to the Prime Minister, the federal government enacted the bill as a law in the country. On August 12, 2021, Justice Minister David Lametti at an appearance at Fallsview Casino Resort in Niagara Falls declared that single-sports betting is becoming reality on August 27, 2021. Now provinces will have to regulate their own rules when offering this new betting option.
Source: Chen, Dalson “Masse welcomes single-event sports betting law in Canada, urges provincial implementation”, Windsor Star, August 27, 2021