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Calling All Affiliates 

Safer Gambling Week is an industry wide campaign to trigger a national conversation about what it means to gamble responsibly. This is the third year of the campaign; last year's event was a great success, with every sector. 

The future success and sustainability of the gambling industry depends on how it looks after its customers and that applies to affiliates just as much as to operators. For some customers, affiliates are their first point of contact with gambling operators. So, if affiliates are to continue to have a significant role in the industry, they must develop clear policies in relation to social responsibility and safer gambling, taking the issue as seriously as if they were themselves licence holders.

Getting involved in Safer Gambling Week, which is taking place from November 7-13, 2019, is a great opportunity for affiliates to communicate safer gambling messages to their customers. During Safer Gambling Week, the entire industry comes together to create a conversation with customers, at every gambling venue and gambling site, about the tools available to help them gamble responsibly all year round and how operators can promote safer gambling. 

We tell anyone who needs more help or advice where they can find it, working closely with partners such as GamCare, who run a free, 24-hour helpline, available to anyone who has a problem with their gambling.

Safer Gambling Week is not just about a single week of activity; it reflects the work operators are doing all year round to promote safer gambling. I have been involved in the industry for more than 20 years and I have seen a significant change in that time; operators are promoting a culture of responsible gambling throughout their organizations.

Affiliates must take the same approach. Whenever they are marketing gambling products, they must act with that sense of social responsibility; operators need to be confident that they can trust them to communicate with customers in the same way as when they are talking them directly. It is the operator’s licence which is at stake. It is a shared responsibility and any affiliate who thinks social responsibility is nothing to do with them is in for a rude shock. Operators will simply stop working with them. The future success of any company depends on treating customers fairly. Affiliates are an important part of the gambling eco system. For some customers, they are the face of the gambling industry and I would be delighted to see affiliate companies actively taking part in the campaign.

The easiest way to do this is by becoming a supporter of Safer Gambling and Safer Gambling Week: you can find out how to register here, which will give you access to resources, information and assets. You can also contribute to the campaign by following @RGWeek19 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, sharing our content to your own followers and helping us communicate with the widest possible audience. The gambling industry has faced relentless criticism in recent years, often unfairly. Safer Gambling Week is a good news story – a chance for us to showcase all that we are doing to promote safer gambling all year round. We would welcome the support of all affiliates.

John Hagan is chairman of the Industry Group For Safer Gambling

August 2019