A report to be released by the Centre for Social Justice confirms critics’ worst suspicions about the Government’s planned ‘Super-Casino’ in East Manchester, saying degeneration, not regeneration, will be the outcome. Highlighted in the report were several key facts that seem not to have been taken into account in the plans. Download PDF of Interim CSJ paper on gambling.
‘Problem’ gambling is on the rise in Britain with over 300,000 addicts, despite the opportunities for gambling being relatively limited. Those most likely to be affected by problem gambling are typically of lower socio-economic background, and bearing in mind that the casino’s planned locality boasts 50% economic inactivity (total dependence on the state), that makes this the worst place to go ahead with the plans. With research suggesting that in the UK, problem gambling and people getting into serious personal debt are very closely linked, and the young being the most severely affected, the casino is a ‘potentially hazardous threat’.
The report quotes the findings of the British Medical Association that there is a ‘close correlation between gambling and other addictive activities, such as drug and alcohol abuse’, as well as clear evidence from other countries’ experience that the installation of these super-casinos often lead to ‘vice and degeneration’ in the neighbouring communities. When Manchester already tops the list for robberies, vehicle crime and violent crime, such exacerbation of the problem is very irresponsible, and the report concludes that the placement of a super-casino in this area could have devastating social consequences.