ANJ Worries that Underage Gambling is Becoming the Norm

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The French gambling authority, L’Authorité Nationale des Jeux, is worried that underage gambling is rising. The concerns come in the wake of a youth gambling report that concluded many French minors engage in various forms of wagering.

More and More French Minors Wager

The research was led by SEDAP and aimed to evaluate the degree of safety of the French gambling market. After questioning 5,000 minors between 15 and 17, the research center concluded that 35% of them have participated in some form of betting in 2021.

Sports betting is on the rise among French teenagers. 28% of the respondents said they have wagered on a sports event in 2021. The rising popularity of esports betting has also impacted the French youth – 21.8% admitted to having placed a bet on an esports event, even though esports betting still isn’t legal in the country.

If lotteries are taken into consideration, the numbers become even higher – it was concluded that 78% of French youth had bought a scratch card at least once in 2021, and 48% have participated in the national lottery.

The minor bettors seem to be equally as likely to bet online as they are to play live, with 50% responding they play on the web and 50% preferring the retail alternative.

The Youth Says Circumventing the Bans Is Easy

The authority is deeply concerned as it emphasizes that many young people begin to bet at 13. As for the youth’s reasons for betting, it seems that their families influenced the majority of the minors. The survey results showed that 45% of the minor bettors had played with their parents. Almost a quarter of the teenagers (23%) have even played through their parents’ online accounts.

It turns out that the young bettors know very well that they aren’t allowed to bet but do so regardless. When asked, 73.4% of the survey respondents said that the band wasn’t an obstacle to them, regardless of whether they wanted to buy a scratch card or to enter a gambling venue. Furthermore, the youth doesn’t seem influenced by the state’s safety campaigns at all as 85% said that they have chosen to play despite seeing numerous ads advising them not to.

Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, the president of L’Authorité Nationale des Jeux, said that gambling had become a staple in the lives of many teenagers. She said that gambling ads and irresponsible parents bear are both to blame for what has now become a major problem. Falque-Pierrotin reminded that studies have demonstrated young bettors are more likely to eventually develop a gambling addiction.

Following these findings, L’Authorité Nationale des Jeux vowed to review its retail ID verification requirements and take measures against the increased number of minor gamblers. The authority said that it would consider applying sanctions where needed.

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