Non-Tribal Casinos Influence to Pathological and Problem Gambling
Other recent studies at the state level provide further evidence. A 1998 study commissioned by the state of Montana found that problem and pathological gamblers account for 36 percent of electronic gambling device (EGD) revenues, 28 percent of live keno expenditures, and 18 percent of lottery scratch ticket sales. 50 A 1999 study for the Louisiana Gaming Control Board indicated that problem and pathological gamblers in Louisiana comprise 30 percent of all spending on riverboat casinos, 42 percent of Indian casino spending, and 27 percent of expenditures on EGD machines. 51
In addition to casinos, the pari-mutuel industry also has begun to take steps to address the issues surrounding problem and pathological gambling. In 1998, the American Horse Council published the “Responsible Wagering Resources Guide for Racing Managers.” Additionally, four major racing organizations— the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Inc., the Thoroughbred Racing Associations of North America, Inc., Harness Tracks of America, and the American Quarter Horse Association— have joined together in an initiative to address problem and pathological gambling among both patrons and employees. 52 The American Greyhound Track Operators Association has advised that “an all out effort will be undertaken this year to educate both management and patrons” about problem and pathological gambling. 53
The Commission mailed a questionnaire to approximately 550 casinos nationwide. Of 143 responses, the top 25 non-tribal casinos responded. Four of the top 20 tribal casinos responded.
There are some hopeful signs found in the responses:
· 15 of the largest 25 non-tribal casinos use professional personnel to train management and staff to help identify problem or pathological gamblers among their customers or employees. Not quite half of all tribal and non-tribal casinos below the top 25 that responded said they used such personnel.
· 11 of the largest 25 non-tribal casinos said they formulated criteria to guide staff in identifying problem and pathological gamblers. Around 4 of 10 among the non-tribal casinos below the top 25 and the tribal casinos responding set such criteria for their staff to follow.
· 24 of the 25 largest non-tribal casinos offered insurance coverage for the cost of treating problem or pathological gambling among employees. About 6 of every 10 among non-tribal casinos below the top 25 and slightly more among tribal casinos did likewise.
· 20 of the 25 largest non-tribal casinos contributed during 1998 to programs or organizations that foster research or treatment for problem and pathological gamblers. About 7 of every 10 tribal casinos and about half of the non-tribal casinos below the top 25 also contributed in varying amounts.
· The top 25 non-tribal casinos averaged four referrals for treatment during 1998 of either employees or customers to persons qualified to provide options for professional treatment. Non-tribal casinos below the top 25 provided referral guidance nine times on the average during 1998. Tribal casinos averaged 16 referrals in the same period, to record the best effort.
51 Polzin, et al., “Final Report Presented to the Montana Gambling Study Commission,” Bureau of Business and Economic Research, University of Montana-Missoula and Gemini Research Ltd., September 30, 1998, p. 25. 52 Letter from James J. Hickey, Jr., president, American Horse Council, to Leo McCarthy, Commissioner, NGISC, April 20, 1999. 53 Letter from Henry C. Cashen II, counsel to the American Greyhound Track Operators Association, to Kay James, NGISC chairman, April 22, 1999.