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Yarmouth ban for gamblers

PUBLISHED: 09:46 05 November 2009 | UPDATED: 15:31 03 July 2010

Young people from the Great Yarmouth area who have a problem with gambling can now ban themselves from fruit machines and arcades.

Youngsters aged under 18 can sign up to the Count Me Out gambling self-exclusion scheme which was launched in the resort in 2007 for adults who have a serious gambling problem.

Young people from the Great Yarmouth area who have a problem with gambling can now ban themselves from fruit machines and arcades.

Youngsters aged under 18 can sign up to the Count Me Out gambling self-exclusion scheme which was launched in the resort in 2007 for adults who have a serious gambling problem.

The new scheme will see young people voluntarily ban themselves from gambling and from entering half a dozen Yarmouth arcades.

Count Me Out is a national first and is the brainchild of PC Gary Pettengell, of Yarmouth police, who set up the not-for-profit social enterprise empowering-communities.org.

Last year the Count Me Out scheme for gamblers was extended into a self-exclusion scheme for people who wanted to be prevented from buying alcohol.

On Tuesday PC Pettengell launched the latest stage of his project which could soon be rolled out to arcades across the county. It is estimated that up to 14pc of young people are at risk of developing a serious gambling addiction which could lead to problems at school, antisocial tendencies, low self-esteem and depression.

PC Pettengell said: “Count Me Out provides effective support to vulnerable people by allowing them to self-exclude from more than one premises and without the need to enter the gaming premises to do so.

“We are now expanding the scheme to include under-18s so that we can help teenage gamblers, who may be developing a problem, before it gets out of control.”

PC Pettengell's Count Me Out gambling project for adults is being run at 116 gambling premises nationally and in Yarmouth seven people have self-excluded themselves from casinos and arcades.

He also hopes that more gambling premises will demonstrate their social responsibility by signing up to his new self-exclusion scheme for youngsters.

Anyone under 18 or gambling premises interested in signing up to Count Me Out can contact empowering-communities.org by calling 01502 576888 or e-mail gary@empowering-communities. org.


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