Campaigners say gambling should be treated as a public health issue - but what do Echo readers think?
Gambling should be treated as a public health issue, campaigners have said – but do Echo readers agree?
The call came from Stewart Kenny, a founder of bookmaker Paddy Power, and former sports minister Tracey Crouch, who resigned over delays to a crackdown on maximum stakes for fixed-odds betting machines.
They told the BBC programme The Teenage Gamblers that gambling, like alcoholism, smoking or addiction to drugs, "should definitely be a public health issue".
Their comments come as children who are seriously addicted to computer games are to get better access to NHS treatment, including via Skype.
Mr Kenny, who resigned in frustration over the failure of senior management to properly tackle problem gambling, described video games addiction as "a huge problem".
We asked Echo readers if they think gambling should be treated as a public health issue.
The results show 55% of more than 600 readers think it should be while 45% are against the idea.
Here’s what readers had to say:
Mark Stevens: “If you haven’t got the dosh then don’t do it. Simple.”
Dale McKenzie: “Gambling addiction destroys the gambler, the family they steal from and their future. Only the house ever truly wins…”
Dave Carter: “Never played on them in my life but my dad and grandad brought us up on horse racing and they were both Timeform men which meant they won more often than they lost.”
Kev Clearly: “You never hear about a gambler having a gambling addiction when they win.”