Host responsibility for pokies in pubs and clubs: results from the 2018 Health and Lifestyles survey

Gambling gambling accessibility Electronic gambling machines Problem gambling New Zealand

This report presents key findings from the 2018 Health and Lifestyles Survey (HLS) concerning pokie players at pubs and clubs, and their interactions at such venues. 

In New Zealand, under the Gambling Act 2003, pubs and clubs with pokie machines are required to prevent their customers’ gambling from becoming harmful. This includes venues having staff who are trained in gambling host responsibility practices present while pokie machines are running. Venues are also required to provide information to gamblers about problem gambling and details of where to seek support.

Key Findings

  • 3 in 5 (62%) pokie players in pubs and clubs were aware of the gambling hosts’ responsibility at venues with pokie machines.
  • 7 in 10 (69%) pokie players noticed information to help someone who might have a problem with their gambling.
  • When pokie players were asked whether they had any interaction with staff at pokie venues:
    • Just over half said they had no communication with staff.
    • Fewer than 1 in 10 said staff monitor the pokie room.
    • No pokie player was spoken to by a member of staff about their gambling or given a leaflet on problem gambling support services, although 16% of these players were experiencing at least some level of gambling harm




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