Responsible Gaming

By Denise Andries, SILA-A, CDEI
Sep 14, 2022
Responsible Gaming

Problem gambling is a common problem facing casinos, the gaming industry and the public at-large. The importance of having a responsible gaming plan and training on recognizing the signs of problem gambling and providing the appropriate resources are essential.

In this post we will discuss responsible gaming plans, how to recognize problem gaming, and responsible gaming training for casino employees.

Responsible Gaming Plan

Many states require preparation and submission of a responsible gaming plan as part of their licensing criteria for casinos and online-gaming operators. The suggested topics to be included in a casino or online-gaming operator’s responsible gaming plan include:

  • recognizing problem gaming
  • a self-exclusion program
  • property signage and responsible gaming disclosures
  • advertising restrictions
  • wager and time limits
  • credit restrictions
  • restrictions on financial instruments
  • ongoing employee training
  • restrictions on alcoholic beverages

Recognizing Problem Gambling

The ability to recognize individuals with potential problem gaming issues is key to the operation of a responsible gaming plan. While an employee is not typically responsible for diagnosing a compulsive or problem gambler (there are experts for that), it is important to be able to recognize the signs of problem gambling. Some of the common signs of problem gambling include:

  • an individual who appears preoccupied with gambling and can talk about nothing else. For instance, every conversation includes a discussion of recent losses, or the potential for future wins.
  • an individual suddenly and consistently increasing the amount of money they are willing to gamble, to increase their excitement in playing.
  • an individual who uses gambling to escape from their problems, anxiety, or other feelings of despair.
  • An individual who has lost a close relationship, or job or career opportunity because of their gambling.
  • an individual who borrows (or worse, steals) money to support their gambling problems.

Responsible Gaming Training

Many states also require a written policy for training employees on responsible gaming. Suggested training topics include:  

  • understanding responsible gaming,
  • understanding problem gaming,
  • identifying and working with a potential problem gambler on the gaming floor, and
  • ensuring that employees promote responsible gambling by avoiding certain actions, such as:
    • encouraging patrons to play longer or for higher stakes
    • discussing with patrons common myths about gambling
    • telling a patron you think they are especially lucky on a particular day
    • offering to watch a patron’s machine while they take a break, or
    • suggesting that the outcome of a game can be controlled.

Learn More

It is important for casino employees who could be exposed to problem gambling to be properly trained on the signs and how to handle it. Training can be provided in person or online. WebCE offers a variety of online training courses for casino employees to get up-to-date information they can apply to their daily job functions. Our course, Responsible Gaming, will provide casino employees with an overview of responsible gaming, the importance of a responsible gaming program, recognizing the signs of problem gambling, and guidance on how to assist an individual who appears to be struggling.

Visit our casino compliance training page for more information on how WebCE can help you implement the right training and education programs for your casino.

WebCE Casino Compliance Training