January 12, 2024 3 min read


Concerned Parents Spark Push for Gambling Ad Ban in Victoria

The chief executive of the state's gambling regulator spoke about a growing number of parents who complained about their children opening betting accounts amid calls for a gambling ad ban

Identified as a public health issue, gambling is widely spread across Australia. Annually, Australians spend billions of dollars on different forms of gambling, including sports betting. Gambling ads contribute toward the record losses, but the country’s federal government is currently exploring options for a reform of the sector. Labor MPs have previously proposed a ban on gambling ads, but the federal government is currently reviewing whether or not this can be implemented.

The proposed reform is supported by Tim Costello, a chief advocate for the Alliance for Gambling Reform. With more people engaging in gambling activities, gambling ads are only putting fuel to the fire, at least for the moment.

In a recent report released by The Guardian, Annette Kimmitt, the chief executive of the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC), the independent authority that regulates the gambling sector in Victoria, spoke about the impact of gambling advertisements and how those ads can push even children into gambling. She confirmed that she is “really waiting with bated breath for the federal government to respond to the inquiry’s recommendations.”

Moreover, Kimmitt spoke about an increasing number of parents who complained to her upon discovering that their children had created online betting accounts. The chief executive said she was bombarded with such complaints while others were asking her for a gambling advertisement ban. To the requests about a gambling ban, Kimmitt responded “I wish I could, but that is not up to me.”

When people find out I am the head of the Victorian gambling regulator, I am bombarded with stories from parents of teenagers who have discovered that their children have online wagering accounts.

Annette Kimmitt, chief executive of the VGCCC

Gambling Reform Is a Once-in-a-Generation Chance

Costello highlighted the importance of the potential gambling reform. He encouraged the federal government to consider major changes to the gambling sector, explaining that this is a “once-in-a-generation chance for reform.” Additionally, Costello said: “The public and parents are crying out for it and the regulator is in touch with the community and knows exactly how they feel.”

In an effort to reduce gambling ads, New South Wales implemented changes to its laws about external advertising. The new state regulations came into effect last year, prohibiting the display of gaming signage. The state’s gambling regulator, Liquor & Gaming New South Wales, was tasked with monitoring the compliance with the new rules and as of December, highlighted that 99% of the venues complied.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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