Bishop of St Albans asks Government about support for young gambling addicts

StAlbans051218On 5th February 2019 Lord Clark of Windermere asked the Government “when they intend to publish the NHS Workforce Implementation Plan which was announced in the NHS Long Term Plan, published on 7 January”. Rt Revd Alan Smith,  Bishop of St Albans, asked a follow up question about the support services made available to young people with gambling addictions.

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, it is encouraging to hear that the long-term plan will include funding for services for those with gambling addictions. With 430,000 gambling addicts in this country, of which 55,000 are teenagers, this is a really urgent matter. Can we press Her Majesty’s Government please to move on this quickly?

There is only one NHS clinic available at the moment. If funding is an issue, will the Government explore the possibility of introducing a mandatory levy on the gambling industry to pay for the cost to the NHS, which Simon Stevens suggests is £1.2 billion?

Baroness Manzoor: My Lords, the right reverend Prelate is right that gambling is an issue. We are doing everything we can to ensure that the industry itself takes this seriously. Equally, in the NHS, we see that some of the issues are health related and we need to do more.


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