The Victorian government has revealed moves to minimize gambling harm at Melbourne’s Crown Casino, including mandatory 15-minute breaks for gamblers. The reforms follow on from the Royal Commission into Crown’s suitability to hold a casino license, which was completed two years ago.
Under the new requirements, customers who have been gambling for three continuous hours will have to take a 15-minute break and a 24-hour break if they have been gambling for more than 12 hours in a day. Customers will be restricted to a maximum of 36 hours of gambling in a single week.
As reported by ABC.net.au, Victoria’s Casino and Gaming minister Melissa Horne said the measures will address problem gambling at the venue: “Some of the evidence that we saw during the Royal Commission showed incredibly predatory behavior on people that were clearly struggling on the casino floor and in the pokie machine rooms in particular.”
Staff at Crown Casino will have the power to turn people away if they have not fulfilled their mandatory break requirements.
“Being able to encourage a patron to take a break from the gambling floor and to discuss harm services is another important step in making sure that we’ve got a casino that has to be a global leader in the reduction of gambling harm,” Horne added.
Crown narrowly avoided losing its casino license following the 2021 Royal Commission. According to its findings, Crown dodged paying hundreds of millions of dollars in state taxes, consorted with criminal gangs and facilitated money laundering on an epic scale. The company also failed to prevent staff from being jailed in China and ignored responsible gambling laws.