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Anti-Gambling Parliament Member Urges ITV to Suspend Gambling Ads During Euro 2021

ITV has been called upon to ban gambling advertisements during the European football championships by a parliamentary group towards gambling-related harm. Ronnie Cowan vice chairman of the group urged ITV some of its advertising aspects need to be changed.

Proactive In Awareness

Mr. Cowan, a keen advocate for families who have lost loved ones due to gambling-related harms including suicide, has called upon authorities and broadcasting companies to become more proactive in awareness of gambling-related harms. As the Euro 2021 begins in June, the Big Step Campaign will walk from Gretna to Wembley to raise awareness of the damage and negative effects gambling can cause.In the UK alone, it’s estimated around 650 people commit suicide due to gambling-related problems with more than a million people suffering from gambling problems.

Should Be About Football Alone

During the 2018 Championships, an estimated £2.3 billion bets were placed on games played in the World Cup with more than 172 gambling ads aired on ITV. Mr. Cowan has aired his views concerning the use of gambling advertising during European and World Championships stating it should be about football alone and not gambling. The British viewers find it literally impossible to watch a match without being exposed to gambling adverts.Further to advertisements aimed at adults, Mr. Cowan was equally concerned about the number of British children subjected to these ads while the football is streamed on TV.Treatment for gambling problems has cost the public £1.2 billion each year due to addiction treatment, crime, or joblessness. It’s not only the gambling addicts themselves who become victims of their behaviour, their families and loved ones are directly affected and may also need additional help.Back in May, a group of 60 gamblers, politicians, and clinicians wrote an open letter to ITV, Sky Sports, and Talksport urging them to think about ads featuring gambling companies whilst airing sports as there is direct evidence these ads may more encourage people to place bets.

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