We work closely with the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) and other partners to minimise the social impact of problem gambling in Singapore.
We take a multi-pronged approach towards tackling problem gambling:
- Preventive measures through public education;
- Mitigation measures through social safeguards; and
- Remedial measures through help services for problem gamblers and their families.
1. Public Education
Education is the first line of defence, especially for our young, to understand the dangers of gambling. The National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG)'s public education campaigns and outreach programmes raise awareness of problem gambling, and encourage both gamblers and family members affected by problem gambling to seek help.
The latest video resource from NCPG can be found here:
2. Social Safeguards
Casino Social Safeguards
We work closely with the Casino Regulatory Authority and NCPG to minimise the potential harm of casino gambling. The casino social safeguards include:
- Casino entry levies
- Entry ban for those below 21 years old
- Credit restrictions for local casino patrons
- Casino exclusions and visit limits
- Self-Exclusion and Voluntary Visit Limit
- Family Exclusion and Visit Limit
- Third-Party Exclusion and Visit Limit
- Automatic Exclusion by Law
- Regulations on casino advertising and promotion
- The Casino Control (Advertising) Regulations (CCAR) was introduced in 2010. Casinos are not allowed to target the domestic market, which includes Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents.
- Regulations on responsible gambling
- The Casino Control (Responsible Gambling) Regulations was introduced in May 2013. Casinos are to implement a responsible gambling programme.
Remote Gambling Social Safeguards
Together with the Ministry of Home Affairs, we implement social safeguards to minimise the potential harm of remote gambling offered by Exempt Operators. These safeguards include:
- Persons below 21 years old are not allowed to open an account with an Exempt Operator
- Persons who are excluded from the casinos under a Family Exclusion Order, a Third Party Exclusion Order or Automatic Exclusion by Law are not allowed to open or maintain an account with an Exempt Operator
- Account holders must set monthly funding and expenditure limits
- All Exempt Operators must implement a Responsible Remote Gambling Programme
- All advertising and promotion materials by an Exempt Operator have to be approved by MSF
Social Safeguards for Private Clubs with Jackpot Machine Rooms
We also work with the Ministry of Home Affairs on social safeguards measures required of the clubs with jackpot machine rooms. These safeguards include:
- Persons below 21 years old are not allowed into the jackpot machine room
- Only members of a club with membership terms of at least one year can enter the jackpot machine room. No guest is allowed.
- Self-exclusion from jackpot machine rooms
- Persons who are excluded from the casinos under a Family Exclusion Order, a Third Party Exclusion Order or Automatic Exclusion by Law are not allowed to enter the jackpot machine room
- No ATMs, Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale systems and credit card facilities in jackpot machine rooms
- No advertising and promotions of jackpot machines outside of jackpot machine rooms and on the Internet or other media platforms
Responsible Gambling for Gambling Operators
A Responsible Gambling Forum comprising industry and community representatives was established in June 2013 to promote shared commitment and understanding towards responsible gambling. A Responsible Gambling Code has also been introduced for voluntary adoption by non-casino gambling operators.
3. Help problem gamblers and their families
We work with NCPG and our appointed agencies (Healthway Medical Group, The Resilienz Clinic and THK Centre for Family Harmony) to develop and provide help services to problem gamblers and their families.
We work with NCPG and the National Addictions Management Service (NAMS) to run the National Problem Gambling Helpline and Webchat, which are operated by trained counsellors daily from 8am to 11pm. Both the Helpline and Webchat provide information on problem gambling, casino exclusions and visit limits, as well as counselling for problem gamblers and their families.
Details on support services and assistance for issues related to problem gambling can be found here.