It is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to gamble in New Jersey casinos. Minors are forbidden to be on the gaming floor, but sometimes individuals fall through the cracks. It is not uncommon to hear about a teenager or young adult gaining access to a casino gaming floor. For New Jersey gaming regulators, a spotlight is now being placed on what will happen to those who are caught gambling illegally. A new bill was recently proposed to ensure fines and possible gambling treatment services for those who are under 21 and gambling.
New Jersey Lawmakers Propose New Treatment Option for Underage Bettors
- S-1599 was introduced by Senator James Beach.
- The goal is to help young people with help for illegal gambling behavior.
- A senate committee recently approved the measure 5-0.
S-1599 Seeks to Change Offense Punishments
Proposed by Senator James Beach, S-1599 seeks to issue a fine, treatment for gambling disorders, or both when dealing with underage individuals. The goal is to help young people see the error of their ways by adding more strict punishments.
The bill was able to advance out of the senate committee earlier this month with a vote of 5-0. After the vote, Beach spoke out about gambling addiction and the seriousness and concern of it growing among teenagers.
Beach says the bill will help to provide treatment for those in need instead of just instituting fines. The hope is that unhealthy relationships with gambling will be resolved to avoid a problem in the future. It is important to point out that analysts do not feel there is a big problem with underage gambling so the legislation may be a misguided effort.
The casinos in Atlantic City are punished more for allowing those who are excluded to gamble. Focusing treatment efforts on those involved in such cases rather than minors might be better. The legislation could also be adjusted to cover self-excluded players who break the rules.
Online Gambling Seems to be a Bigger Threat
Some say that for underage gambling, the real threat lies within the online gambling sector. Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey executive director Felicia Grondon stated that the bill is a good start, but it does not help with the online gambling issue.
The data held by the Council shows that iGaming is more of a threat to young people. It is more popular and accessible to the younger crowd. There are more opportunities for kids to gamble online since they can try and hide their identity.
It seems the bill is heading in the right direction, but it might need a few changes to ensure that all bases are covered. Adding details regarding iGaming would help, and providing treatment for adults on the self-exclusion list that break the rules could also be a great place to start.
Responsible Gambling is a Must
Overall, the New Jersey gambling market remains focused on responsible gambling. The state has worked hard to provide programs and treatment options for players who need help. Additional features are offered within online casinos to help players set gaming limits. Players can set limits on how much they deposit, spend per session, and how long they play.
Earlier this year, the state launched a new responsible gaming initiative to review player behavior. Players can see if they might have a gambling addiction and use automatic resources to seek help. This is a great step in the direction of player safety and responsible sessions. The resources are readily available, so every player can take advantage of what the sites like 888 and Golden Nugget have to offer.
Gaming officials can review data and pay more attention to gamblers who spend more time playing each week in a session or spend more money. Special attention can be paid to those seeking a ban or cooling-off period.
Having started in 2005 as an online writer, Sadonna has focused on the online gambling industry, with a keen knowledge of various subjects. Sadonna has followed the growing US-based gambling industry for decades, covering all the legal changes in the nation as well as information on land-based and online casinos. She enjoys updating fellow gamblers on new games, casino bonuses, and additional information for premium gaming services. In her spare time, Sadonna loves spending time with her family and singing on Smule. Sadonna hopes to continue working in the online gambling industry and building quality articles for players to learn more about the US market.