Gambling firms to pull adverts from TV and radio for remainder of lockdown

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) said that firms had voluntarily reached the decision - which follows pressure from critics

Close-up on a man betting online at home on his cell phone using his credit card. **DESIGN ON SCREEN WAS MADE FROM SCRATCH BY US**

Gambling firms will stop advertising on TV and radio for the remainder of the lockdown, after the country’s biggest firms agreed to pull adverts for at least six weeks.

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The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) said that firms had voluntarily reached the decision, which comes after the industry had come under fire – with some critics claiming that firms had been exploiting those stuck at home.

Existing radio and TV slots will reportedly now be filled by safer gambling messages and adverts for charities.

A statement from Michael Dugher, the chief executive of the BGC, read, “From day one of this crisis we have sought to protect customers potentially at risk

“We are determined to do everything we can to protect customers potentially at risk during this lockdown period and beyond.”

He added, “This latest move by the regulated industry further underlines our commitment to safer betting and gaming with many people cut off and feeling anxious.

“I hope now that other major gambling operators like the National Lottery follow our lead.”

The BGC covers betting shops, online betting and gaming, bingo and casinos, and the advertising ban will come into effect as soon as possible – with 7th May given as the latest possible start date.

Last week, the Government wrote to gambling firms requesting frequent updates regarding their attempts to tackle problem gambling whilst the lockdown was ongoing, with more than 20 MPs having called for a ban on advertising and other strict measures designed to help those at risk.

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