BETTING FRENZY ENDANGERING CHILDREN

The number of advertisements for betting firms during sports matches, and the number of sports pundits extolling their products is worrying gambling charities which are concerned about the effect of these items in hooking children into gambling.

Since the last Labour government relaxed laws governing the broadcast of ads encouraging betting the number seen by children has tripled, with many ads urging bets on football matches screened before the 9.00pm watershed.

The other problem is the number of sports pundits who now act as ambassadors, or paid pushers, to betting firms, with Alan Shearer pushing Coral and Jermaine Jenas pushing Unibet. Meanwhile Robbie Savage promotes William Hill on Twitter and Michael Vaughan promotes bookmaker Mr Green.

Some football clubs themselves have ads for gambling on football shirts sold to under-18’s.

Figures produced in 2016 by charity GambleAware show that problem gamblers cost the UK taxpayer up to £1.2 billion a year. Betting firms are the biggest suppliers of gifts to UK MP’s.

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