That Synod notes the Productivity Commission’s report into gambling which indicates that

i) there are between 80,000-160,000 problem gamblers in Australia, along with another 230,000-350,000 vulnerable to problem gambling;
ii) poker machine users are disproportionately represented among the ranks of Australia’s problem gamblers;
iii) 41% of the $11.9 billion that Australians lose on poker machines annually comes from problem gamblers; and
iv) the public benefits and jobs creation, which the registered clubs claim to offer through their gambling profits are highly debatable.

General Synod recognises the dependence of all state and territory governments on revenue from poker machine gambling leads them to have a conflict of interest when considering strategies to reduce problem gambling. General Synod endorses efforts being proposed in Australia’s Federal Parliament to reduce the impact and incidence of problem gambling, e.g. by the introduction of a compulsory precommitment system for poker machine use.

Synod respectfully asks the Primate to inform all state governments and all political parties and independents in the Federal Parliament of General Synod’s position.

The Reverend Sandy Grant moved, Mrs Tanya Costello seconding, 23 Sept 10