This year, the campaign to #EndGamblingAds remains as urgent as ever. A pandemic couldn’t stop the gambling ads, but we know our communities can. We’ve started the year off on the front foot, with a movement 24,300 supporters strong, growing and high profile public opposition, and with a new Sports Gambling Campaigner to work to on #EndGamblingAds full time.
In 2020, we saw just how deep the gambling industry’s contempt for our communities is. While we were all making sacrifices to look after each other, sports gambling companies were only looking out for themselves. They spent huge amounts of money plastering our TV screens with gambling ads, taking advantage of our isolation and stress to get people to spend more money, more often.
While sport continues to be impacted by ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, our focus remains on the responsibility of broadcasters like SBS. For decades, the SBS has been a much loved source of trusted, multicultural information.
Recently though, sports gambling companies have been taking advantage of this trusted image to further push their damaging products. In 2020, SBS took money from Beteasy, Bet365, Sportsbet, Ladbrokes, TAB, and Neds. This is despite the known and disproportionate harm that gambling causes in migrant communities, who are often reliant on the SBS for in-language programming.
As Senator Rex Patrick recently said in Senate Estimates,
“the principal function of SBS is to provide multilingual and multicultural broadcasting and digital media services that inform, educate and entertain all Australians… I would put it to you that the harm caused by [gambling] advertising is diametrically opposed to [these] objectives”.
So this year, with a growing movement of supporters like you behind us, we’re asking the question; will SBS play a frontline role in the fight against gambling harm, or will they keep taking dirty money from gambling companies?