GAA Launch Gambling Awareness Campaign ‘Reduce the Odds’
The GAA’s new gambling awareness campaign, ‘Reduce the Odds’, aims to protect the wellbeing of GAA members and the integrity of Gaelic Games.
The campaign reinforces the ground-breaking decision by GAA Congress 2018 to prohibit the sponsorship by a betting firm of any GAA competition, team, playing gear, or facility. Specifically, the campaign aims to:
· inform all members of the Association’s rules relating to gambling
· highlight research identifying athletes as an at-risk group in relation to problem gambling
· signpost persons in need of help to support services available in Ireland
The campaign’s tier’s approach will include the distribution of awareness posters to every club in Ireland. A gambling awareness presentation and club gambling policy, designed by the GAA’s Community & Health Department, will also be made available to all interested clubs.
GAA rules governing the area of gambling include the successful 2017 motion to Congress prohibiting any player, team, member of a management team, or match official, from betting on any element of a game in which they are involved. The monitoring of this rule has been strengthened by the recent development of memorandums of understanding (MOU) between the GAA and the Irish Bookmakers Association and Betfair / Paddy Power. The MOUs allow for the sharing of sensitive information should either party suspect that their rules or terms and conditions have been broken. Sanctions include suspension and possible disbarment from the Association.
Uachtarán CLG, John Horan, said: “Gambling and sport is a societal issue in the modern world. The wellbeing of our members and the integrity of our games are paramount to the GAA. The Association has made significant strides in recent years to preserve both and we hope that his campaign offers our clubs and members the resources necessary to continue that work at grassroots level.”
Galway hurler, Davy Glennon, is supporting the campaign. Having experienced the devastation of gambling addiction, he said: “I never thought I could become addicted to gambling when I started betting. I had no idea of the potential consequences of what started out as a bit of fun. I’m delighted to support the GAA’s campaign to ‘Reduce the Odds’ and I hope that the posters and the presentation keep other players and members fully aware of the GAA’s new rules but also of the risk to their wellbeing. I recommend anyone that is concerned about their gambling to seek help sooner rather than later. Reaching out helped save my life.”
A full interview with Davy Glennon will be made available on GAA.ie in the coming weeks. Additional resources for clubs relating to the GAA’s Gambling Awareness Campaign ‘Reduce the Odds’ will also be available on www.gaa.ie/community at that time.