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More New Yorkers Join Voluntary Exclusion Lists, Finds Report

According to a recent report, there has been a surge in New Yorkers who have opted to join voluntary self-exclusion programs after the introduction of mobile sports betting. The report was issued by the New York State Gaming Commission and the Office of Addiction Services and Supports, and it indicated that there was a 33% increase in exclusion requests in the first 12 months.

It should be mentioned that the report is required by law and it was most recently updated on June 29, 2023. However, it does not feature analysis or attempt to interpret and does not make the case for a connection between the launch of mobile sports betting in January 2022 and the gathered information. The state’s market became the largest in the country in no time.

Findings from the Analysis

New York’s report finds that in the first 12 months of legal online sports wagering, there was a 33% increase in voluntary exclusion requests. It also noted a 23% spike in calls to the state’s HOPEline. That is not all as more women than men have enrolled in the state’s self-exclusion program in the last two-and-a-half years.

Furthermore, between January 2021 and April 2023, it was reported that 1,549 women and 1,230 men signed up to be excluded from legal gambling in the state. The majority of people were in the age bracket of 31 to 40 with 658, 41 to 50 with 668, and 51 to 60 with 656. Also, 322 people in the state between the ages of 19 and 30 have opted for self-exclusion since 2021.

In addition to that, the report provided a look into numbers to HOPEline. In 2021 those reached 1,899 total calls, then 2,402 in 2022, and 604 in 2023 until March. It also dived into online sports betting by minors and in 2022 there were 58 alleged occasions of underage gambling through lawfully created accounts.

NYSGC and OASAS say the future annual reports will incorporate statistical and demographic information on land-based vs. online self-exclusion, Land-based vs. online self-exclusion, length of time of self-exclusion, people who visit sports betting licensees’ problem gambling web pages, while also locating specific geographic regions or populations in need of services.

Sports Betting Popularity is Alarming

In the past, addiction experts from the state have also expressed concerns about the rising popularity and availability of mobile sports betting. Jeffrey Wierzbicki, from the Western Problem Gambling Resource Center in Buffalo, shared that more and more people have sought help after the introduction of the market, and many of these people are young individuals.

Meanwhile, US Rep. Paul Tonko, D-20th who put effort into protecting consumers by banning betting ads, said that his legislation has stalled in Congress. A while back he introduced a bill to ban such advertising. He recently said that the state battles aggressive marketing strategies by sportsbook operators to protect its sports bettors.