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Twitter Tweet. Business Insurance in Detroit, MI. We know your business means everything to you. As each reel comes to a stop, it sounds as if gears are locking into place. Suddenly, a wolf howls, more bells and whistles go off, and lights flash. But the bet was 40 cents. Each machine contains an array of games targeted at different kinds of players. Some feature themes centered around shopping, jewelry and makeup.
Others depict busty, scantily clad women. The games create the impression that gamblers can control the outcome by touching the screen or hitting the spin button to stop the virtual wheels. But the outcome is determined the moment a player pushes the button. Many players believe machines run hot or cold, as if the devices get on streaks, or that the more spins a player makes, the greater the chances of a payout.
Video gambling chairs, which can cost hundreds of dollars, are built to be occupied for long periods, with padding and ergonomic designs. Some look like recliners, with buttons in the armrests, so people can play without moving their arms. In May , when the Video Gaming Act came up for a final vote, not a single member of the Illinois Senate spoke about the social costs of gambling.
In the House, according to transcripts, only one lawmaker, Rep. In , Illinois ranked 28th of 40 states nationally in per capita funding for addiction services, according to the most recent survey from the National Council on Problem Gambling , a nonprofit that advocates for problem gamblers but says it takes no position on legalized gambling. Legislators structured the Video Gaming Act and the finances behind it with little concern for the potential consequences.
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Licensing and administrative fees would pay for regulating the industry and confronting social costs, such as addiction. The Illinois Department of Human Services — which issues grants for treatment, outreach and training for clinicians — has struggled to spend the money that is appropriated each year. By , the percentage had dropped to 63 percent. Officials with the human services agency said providers have had trouble getting gambling addicts to seek treatment and that there are not enough clinicians who specialize in gambling addiction.
Illinois Insects ( Found)
The number of people receiving services dropped by 37 percent, from 6, to 4, Officials said some of the decline in patient numbers might be attributed to gambling addicts being treated for accompanying alcohol or drug abuse, included in those numbers instead. They say they need more billboards, TV and radio ads and sophisticated social media campaigns to educate the public about how to identify the warning signs of problem gambling.
Officials said they are planning a push in March, Problem Gambling Awareness Month, that will include a new website, mailers, flyers and posters. A lack of clinicians certified to treat gambling addiction has also made it hard to tackle the problem, according to agency officials. With few options, gamblers seeking help sometimes attend one of the more than 60 Gamblers Anonymous meetings that are held in Illinois every week. Though many who attend the meetings say they believe the program helps, a majority of those meetings are held around Chicago, leaving gambling addicts outside the area with fewer options.
Donald Black of the Carver College of Medicine at the University of Iowa, a prominent gambling researcher who has studied addiction in Illinois. One measure has proved somewhat effective at helping problem gamblers: a registry, called a self-exclusion list, that lets people bar themselves from gambling. But the state has yet to implement one for video gambling. A gaming board memo that examines self-exclusion programs around the world suggests the impact on revenue is among the biggest obstacles.
Because any self-exclusion list would probably cut into revenue, the industry would likely oppose it. Of those, nearly 38 percent, about 5,, said video gambling was why they applied to be on the list, according to gaming board statistics. Self-exclusion lists are easier to enforce at casinos because there are only 10, gaming board officials said.
If people on the list are caught gambling, they must forfeit winnings, which are donated to nonprofits that tackle gambling addiction. They also can be charged with trespassing. Other countries have established self-exclusion lists for video gambling. Sweden, for instance, requires anyone who wants to play video slot and poker machines outside of casinos to register and receive a player card or government-issued ID, which must be swiped at each device before a bet can be placed.
Illinois legislators could require the board to implement a self-exclusion list — and provide funding to study the issue — but have made no move to do so. Gamblers on the casino self-exclusion lists and clinicians said the lack of one for video gambling has added obstacles to their recovery.
Another option to deal with problem gambling is to add technology to the machines to control play. Oak Leafroller.
Illinois city aims to oust little girl’s lemonade stand
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