New York’s Responsible Play Partnership to host events as part of Problem Gambling Awareness Month

New York State’s Responsible Play Partnership (RPP), consisting of the New York State Gaming Commission, the New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS), and the New York Council on Problem Gambling, is holding multiple events to drive attention to the issue as part of the 20th anniversary of National Problem Gambling Awareness Month.

On March 10 at 11 a.m., the RPP will hold a press conference at the Javits Center with National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) Executive Director Keith Whyte to highlight the treatment and service options available across New York State for individuals who need help.

Robert Williams, Gaming Commission Executive Director, said: “Thanks to the efforts of NCPG and the work of the Responsible Play Partnership, we are bringing attention to this crucial issue and promoting a safe, responsible gaming environment. As gaming opportunities in New York State continue to expand, all New Yorkers should be aware of the myriad avenues to support for those who need help.”

Robert Williams

Chinazo Cunningham, Commissioner of the Office of Addiction Services and Supports, commented: “OASAS is committed to ensuring that a comprehensive range of prevention, treatment, harm reduction, and recovery services related to problem gambling are available for New Yorkers in need.”

“Through the Responsible Play Partnership, and ongoing collaborative efforts with the New York State Gaming Commission and the New York Council on Problem Gambling, we are able to extend the reach of our efforts to raise awareness about problem gambling and how to access services,” she added.

The RPP, now in its 10th year of existence, was formed to bring all stakeholders together to address problem gambling, including bridging the gap between gaming facility operators and problem gambling treatment providers.

The RPP works to ensure that all gaming entities in the state comply with all rules and regulations and provide access to help for individuals who need it. It continues to collaborate to advance New York’s ongoing commitment to prevent and treat problem gambling, the Partnership says.

Jim Maney, New York Council on Problem Gambling Executive Director, stated: “It is fitting that in this year, marked by the anniversaries of both PGAM and the RPP, we have seen an unprecedented interest and commitment to addressing problem gambling.”

Jim Maney

The Council is pleased to be in partnership with organizations like the NYS OASAS and NYS Gaming Commission to Shine a Light on this important issue through awareness-raising events and efforts across the State,” the executive added.

To “Shine a Light” on the issue of problem gambling, notable landmarks, and gaming facilities across New York will light their properties in yellow during the month of March. Participating facilities include but are not limited to:

  • Albany International Airport Gateway
  • Empire State Plaza
  • Fairport Lift Bridge over the Erie Canal
  • Grand Central Terminal
  • Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex
  • One World Trade Center
  • Peace Bridge
  • Penn Station – East End Gateway
  • State Fairgrounds – Main Gate and Expo Center

In addition to the March 10 event with NCPG, the RPP will support and promote multiple events throughout March and the rest of the year to sustain public awareness of problem gambling and the availability of prevention, treatment, and recovery services, including:

  • The New York Council on Problem Gambling’s Annual Conference on March 8–9.
  • Cambridge Health Alliance Division on Addiction’s Gambling Disorder Screening Day on March 14 to help identify individuals who should seek an assessment of their gambling behavior.
  • Regional listening sessions hosted by OASAS with stakeholders in the problem gambling treatment community to inform the agency’s problem gambling strategic operating plan.
  • RPP problem gambling education events at gaming venues across New York State to showcase the safeguards in place to promote responsible gaming. Further details will be announced shortly.

Keith Whyte

For his part, Keith Whyte, National Council on Problem Gambling Executive Director, added: “We are excited to share in the celebration of Problem Gambling Awareness Month’s 20th anniversary. During March and throughout the year, the Responsible Play Partnership in New York has been instrumental in promoting awareness about problem gambling.”

We applaud their commitment to providing communities across the state access to problem gambling prevention, treatment, and recovery services,” he concluded.

The events and initiatives come as NY stakeholders ramp up their efforts to tackle problem gambling in the Empire State. The NY Gaming Commission has recently introduced stricter regulations to limit sports betting ads targeting underage individuals. And for their part, state lawmakers are concurrently considering two responsible gaming bills: S1550 and A1056.