Lib Dems back move to defeat 'craven' Govt over FOBT delay


The Liberal Democrats have today announced they will back a cross-party amendment to the Finance Bill to ensure the maximum stake for fixed-odds betting terminals are introduced within six months.
 
Speaking ahead of the vote next week, Liberal Democrat Leader Vince Cable said:
 
“A few months ago I was approached by a mother who was distraught after her son had committed suicide as a result of distress caused by debts that had accrued from compulsive gambling. 

“There is now a network of grieving relatives who have been brought together by the same dreadful experience. Like them, I want the NHS to recognise gambling addiction as a serious mental health condition. Preventive action is also needed including urgent steps to curb some of the more exploitative practices like high stake fixed-odds betting terminals.

“I and the Liberal Democrats will therefore work with others to stop these abusive practices and introduce a crackdown as promised.  The Government has been utterly craven in giving in to lobbying from the industry and must now back the cross-party amendment or face defeat.”
 
Liberal Democrat Culture, Media & Sport Spokesperson in the House of Commons, Christine Jardine, added:  
 
“Further delays are causing more and more vulnerable people to face financial stress, mental health problems and worse.
 
“It doesn’t need to be this way. Liberal Democrats demand better, which is why we have been calling for the maximum stake to be reduced to £2 for nearly a decade.

“The Tories have already taken too long to act, now they are kicking it into the long grass. It simply isn’t good enough.”


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