- Many Brits continue to suffer with gambling problems in silence due to stigma
- GambleAware has launched a new campaign focused on reducing stigma
- The campaign was developed in collaboration with the gambling harms and lived experience community
GambleAware has highlighted the importance of addressing the stigma of problem gambling as it remains one of the primary reasons why many people experiencing gambling-related issues are unwilling to get help.
A new study commissioned by the charity found that 2 in 3 adults with gambling problems in Great Britain choose to suffer in isolation, with stigma identified as a major barrier to seeking support.
Stigma Preventing People from Seeking Help
New research from GambleAware has revealed that the majority of people with gambling problems in Great Britain (64%) choose not to speak to anyone about it, with 39% admitting they feel ashamed and guilty and are afraid of being judged.
According to the report, the majority of the public considers certain gambling products, such as instant win games, addictive, which shows that anyone can be affected by gambling harm. This also underlines the importance of building empathy for individuals impacted by harm.
GambleAware CEO Zoe Osmond has described the figures as “alarming”, saying there is a need to end damaging stigma to encourage more people to come forward and open up about gambling. Osmond said it is important that people experiencing gambling harms are aware that help is available and initiating that first conversation is a crucial step in getting the right support and treatment.
New Campaign to Reduce Stigma Associated with Gambling Harms
The charity has launched a new public health campaign to turn the spotlight on the “power of conversations”. Developed in partnership with the gambling harms and lived experienced community, the campaign aims to reduce the stigma associated with gambling harms and reassure those affected that help is never far.
GambleAware is running the campaign with support from a range of partners, including the Ministry of Defence and CALM, and media companies. The campaign, which focuses on changing societal perceptions of gambling harms and normalizing help-seeking, will specifically be targeted at communities most vulnerable to harm, such as people from minority ethnic backgrounds.
A number of influential figures in Great Britain are also lending their voices to the campaign. Among them are Dr Ellie Cannon, Dr Linda Papadopoulos, Professor Dame Clare Gerada, presenter Scott Thomas, and sports broadcaster Clive Tyldesley.
Those who may be experiencing gambling harms are encouraged to use GambleAware’s self-assessment tool available on its website to get free and confidential support.