THOMPSON – The New York State Gaming Commission, New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) and New York Council on Problem Gambling, which together comprise New York’s Responsible Play Partnership (RPP), last Wednesday, came together with executive management at Resorts World Catskills in Monticello to discuss steps being taken to address problem gambling.
Gaming Commission Executive Director Robert Williams debuted signage featuring the industry’s first-ever Quick Response (QR) Code to connect problem gamblers with trained problem gambling clinicians where they live, in real time.
Executive Director Williams said, “As the gaming arena continues to expand across New York State, the Commission and our partners are committed to making gaming safe and responsible for all. We are united in working together to make sure that individuals who need help have access to the necessary tools and resources in a timely manner.”
Once scanned, the QR Code automatically links users to the Council on Problem Gambling’s website (www.nyproblemgamblinghelp.org), which provides access to a network of Regional Problem Gambling Resource Centers supported by OASAS. The QR Code is available on advertising and promotional materials issued by the Gaming Commission and its licensees. Applications include New York Lottery scratch-off tickets, promotional screens at nearly 15,000 Lottery retail outlets statewide, mobile sports wagering promotional mailings, complementary messaging on all 18+ age verification signage posted at horse racing tracks, and digital signage found on the gaming floor at video lottery gaming facilities and commercial casinos.
OASAS Commissioner Chinazo Cunningham said, “When an individual makes the decision to get help for gambling problems, it is essential that a treatment connection is made quickly. The QR code is an innovative approach to connecting individuals to specially trained outpatient and inpatient treatment programs and private practitioners, throughout the state. OASAS is pleased to be a member of the Responsible Play Partnership, as we work to ensure that all New Yorkers who gamble do it responsibly and know where to get help if they need it.”
Since its launch in January, the QR code has logged more than 2,500 total scans and more than 600 unique scans.
The RPP continues to explore ways to harness technology to bring immediate and lasting help to those who need it.
Council Executive Director Maney shared, “In the 10th year of the RPP’s unprecedented collaboration, it is fitting that we focus on raising awareness of safety measures to protect NYers and celebrate the advancements we’ve made in connecting those in need to care. We look forward to next steps in the evolution of problem gambling prevention in NYS.”
The Council maintains a network of regional Problem Gambling Resource Centers, including the Mid-Hudson PGRC (Mid-HudsonPGRC@NYProblemGambling.org), to provide services that raise awareness of the risks of problem gambling and advocate for those in need.
Mid-Hudson Program Manager, Amanda Quintana said, “We at the PGRC are grateful for the opportunity to continue raising awareness of problem gambling. The more we have this conversation and work to reduce the stigma associated with the disease, the better we as a collective can serve and support our communities. For those impacted by problem gambling, we want them to know help and hope are available. Over the past few years, treatment has become much more accessible. We have treatment options close to home, available in over 10 languages throughout the state, available via tele-medicine, as well as offering varying levels of care. The PGRC is here to help anyone impacted by problem gambling with care and concern at every step of the way. Our main priority is getting you the help needed to be your best self.”
“Safety and responsibility are top priorities for Resorts World leadership,” said Meghan Taylor, Genting New York Vice President of Government Affairs and Public Relations. “We have a longstanding commitment to responsible gaming that includes working to deliver the most current and comprehensive training in the industry and we applaud the Gaming Commission for taking advantage of QR technology that we can incorporate into that instruction. Ensuring our staff is prepared to fight this issue contributes to the overall well-being of our guests and neighboring community.”