Relates to compulsive gambling assistance.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the mental hygiene law and the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law, in relation to compulsive gambling assistance
PURPOSE: To develop or identify already existing educational materials which can offer assistance in the prevention and treatment of compulsive gambling for individuals who may have as issue with problem gambling or have placed themselves on gambling facility self exclusion list. In addition, such materials and programs shall be directly transmitted to individuals that have place themselves on such self exclusion list.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1: Amends the Mental Hygiene Law section 19.09 to add new subdivisions (i) and (j). This section authorizes, under a new subdivision (i), that the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) may either develop or identify already existing educational materials on prevention and treatment of those who have or may have problems with compulsive gambling. In addition, such educational materials shall be transmitted, most probably, electronically to those persons who have placed themselves on the gambling self exclusion list provided for under Racing Law section 111.
This section also, adds a new subdivision (j) to empower OASAS, in consultation with the State Gaming Commission, to establish a problem gambling education program, course of study, or a set of behavior modification suggestions that may be presented and completed by any individual who has placed themselves on a gambling self exclusion list. This program would most likely be made available on-line to reduce the cost of presenting such an education program and course of study. Such a program would be directly transmitted to all individuals who have placed themselves on a gambling self exclusion list. Further, such program would be available on the websites of OASAS and the State Gaming Commission to be used by the general public and those who have not placed themselves on a self exclusion list.
Section 2: Amends Racing Law section 111, which relates to the gambling self exclusion list to authorize the State Gaming Commission, in consultation with OASAS, to transmit educational information and programs related to problem gambling to those who have placed themselves on the gambling self exclusion list. This section also, increases the time of self exclusion from 7 to 30 days after a request has been received by the gambling facility to rescind such self exclusion.
JUSTIFICATION: The economic, social, and public health effects associated with compulsive gambling can have significant adverse impacts on individuals, their families, and loved ones particularly for those who have compulsive gambling issues or problems. Further, the American Gaming Association (AGA), which represents the commercial casino entertainment industry, acknowledges that this condition does exist and can have highly detrimental social, economic, and public health ramifications for those who are susceptible to compulsive or problem gambling conditions and to the community at large.
One method used to promote responsible gaming and address the problems faced by those who are afflicted with compulsive gambling conditions is the institution of the gaming facility "self-exclusion list." These self-exclusion lists are used nationwide by many gaming facilities to encourage responsible gaming. In many states, including New York, gaming facilities are required by law to offer the ability for an individual to voluntarily place themselves on a self-exclusion list which will prevent them from entering, placing a wager, or collecting winnings from a gambling facility. In addition, if an individual is seen on the premises of a facility, they may be escorted off the gaming facility property. In states with more comprehensive problem gambling assistance frameworks, the exclusion provisions focus on helping individuals, connecting them with treatment providers and programs, and with other support networks, to address their issues with problem gambling.
In Pennsylvania, as of January 1, 2012, over 3,000 individuals have made requests to be placed on the state's self-exclusion list and thirty three percent, or approximately 900 of those people have sought treatment. Further, the state of Illinois requires that prior to removal from a self-exclusion list; a treating physician or qualified mental health professional who is a certified gambling counselor must provide a written recommendation on the self-excluded person's capacity to participate in gambling without experiencing adverse behavioral health risks or consequences.
New York's self exclusion program is not as extensively used as it is used in many other states. Further, it should be modernized to make it a more effective program that can accurately identify persons early on who have compulsive gambling problems, enable such persons to keep away from gaming facilities, and to enter into a course of treatment to effectively address or mitigate their problems.
This bill seeks to enhance New York State's self exclusion provisions by: First, developing or identifying already existing educational materials and programs to increase awareness for individuals who voluntarily self exclude and are potentially dealing with a gambling addiction, and Second, to get these educational materials, program
information, and information on support groups to this vulnerable population that has placed him or herself on a self-exclusion list.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Minimal.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect 180 days after the date in which part A of chapter 60 of the laws of 2012, takes effect.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7304--A IN SENATE May 2, 2012 ___________Introduced by Sen. KLEIN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the mental hygiene law and the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law, in relation to compulsive gambling assist- ance THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 19.09 of the mental hygiene law is amended by adding two new subdivisions (i) and (j) to read as follows: (I) THE COMMISSIONER SHALL DEVELOP OR IDENTIFY EXISTING EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS WHICH OFFER ASSISTANCE IN THE PREVENTION AND TREATMENT OF COMPULSIVE GAMBLING FOR INDIVIDUALS THAT VOLUNTARILY PLACE THEMSELVES ON A SELF EXCLUSION LIST PURSUANT TO SECTION ONE HUNDRED ELEVEN OF THE RACING, PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING AND BREEDING LAW. SUCH EDUCATIONAL MATERI- ALS SHALL IMMEDIATELY BE TRANSMITTED TO SUCH PERSONS PLACED ON SUCH LIST AND MADE AVAILABLE TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC ON THE WEBSITES OF THE OFFICE AND THE NEW YORK STATE GAMING COMMISSION. SUCH MATERIALS SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NEED NOT BE LIMITED TO, RESOURCES OR INFORMATION RELATED TO COMPUL- SIVE GAMBLING AND CONTACT INFORMATION ON AVAILABLE TREATMENT PROGRAMS OR SUPPORT GROUPS. (J) THE COMMISSIONER, IN CONSULTATION WITH THE NEW YORK STATE GAMING COMMISSION, SHALL ESTABLISH A PROBLEM GAMBLING EDUCATION PROGRAM WHICH MAY BE COMPLETED BY ANY INDIVIDUAL WHO HAS PLACED HIMSELF OR HERSELF ON A SELF EXCLUSION LIST PURSUANT TO SECTION ONE HUNDRED ELEVEN OF THE RACING, PARI-MUTUEL WAGERING AND BREEDING LAW. SUCH PROGRAM SHALL BE TRANSMITTED TO ALL PERSONS PLACED ON SUCH SELF EXCLUSION LIST AND MADE AVAILABLE TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC ON THE WEBSITES OF THE OFFICE AND NEW YORK STATE GAMING COMMISSION, AND SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMITED TO RESOURCES OR INFORMATION RELATED TO COMPULSIVE GAMBLING AND CONTACT INFORMATION ON AVAILABLE TREATMENT PROGRAMS OR SUPPORT GROUPS. S 2. Paragraphs (a) and (c) of subdivision 2 of section 111 of the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law, as added by section 1 ofEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD15572-06-2 S. 7304--A 2
part A of chapter 60 of the laws of 2012, are amended to read as follows: (a) The commission, IN COOPERATION WITH THE OFFICE OF ALCOHOLISM AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE SERVICES, shall promulgate rules and regulations pursu- ant to which people may: voluntarily exclude themselves from entering the premises of an association or corporation licensed or enfranchised by the commission pursuant to this chapter AND; RECEIVE THE REQUIRED EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS ON COMPULSIVE GAMBLING PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISIONS (I) AND (J) OF SECTION 19.09 OF THE MENTAL HYGIENE LAW. (c) No voluntary order or request to exclude persons from entering the premises of any such association, corporation, or facility may be rescinded, canceled, or declared null and void until
[seven]THIRTY days after a request has been received by such association, corporation, or facility to cancel such order or request. S 3. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after part A of chapter 60 of the laws of 2012 takes effect.