The Gambling Commission has published a report the objective of which was “to describe the prevalence of gambling participation, at-risk gambling and problem gambling” and to explore associated character.
Data was combined from the Health Survey for England , the Scottish Health Survey and the Wales Omnibus, all from 2015.
The Gambling Commission identified these key findings:
- 1.4% of gamblers were classed as problem gamblers (0.8% of the population), with 6.4% at-risk (3.9% of the population) – which is similar to the rate published in the 2012 report;
- Problem gambling was more prevalent among people who had participated in a multiple gambling activities in the past year, than those that had just participated in one;
- 63% of adults (aged 16 and over) in Great Britain had gambled in the past year.
- Men (66%) are more likely to gambling than women (59%);
- Most popular gambling activities were: National Lottery draws (46%), scratchcards (23%) and other lotteries (15%);
- Overall participation was highest among the middle age groups and lowest among the youngest and oldest age groups whilst those in employment or training were more likely to gamble (69%).
- Participation by those unemployed was at 56% and 57% for those retired.
Gambling Commission Executive Tim Miller stated:
“Whilst overall problem gambling rates in Britain have remained statistically stable, our research suggests that in excess of two million people are at-risk or classed as problem gamblers, with very many more impacted by the wider consequences of gambling-related harm.”
Following publication of the latest report, the Gambling Commission has called for a ‘renewed focus’ on addressing gambling associated harms.