UK bookies reject Labour’s manifesto

UK bookies charge against the Labour Party.

Credits: Jeremy Corbyn / The Independent.

British bookies are pushing back against the Labour Party’s manifesto that proposes a reduction in FOBT betting stakes.

UK.- The Labour Party’s election manifesto was leakes on wednesday and alarms were triggered among UK bookmakers. The party’s position on reducing fixed-odds betting terminal (FOBT) betting stakes from £100 to only £2 has sparked a push back from bookies.

According to CalvinAyre, the Association of British Bookmakers (ABB) quickly addressed the Labour manifesto, and described it as a “bizarre and unjustified attack on betting shops.” The reduction “would destroy over 20 thousand jobs, close thousands of betting shops, cost millions of pounds in lost taxes and end a popular activity for millions of people”, the ABB stated.

The party argues that, if elected, its government would “legislate to increase the delay in between spins on these games in order to reduce the addictive nature of the games.” The ABB answered by quoting findings by the GambleAware charity: reducing stakes was “not the most effective option for minimizing gambling-related harm.”

They even accused Labour of “falling for the spin of our commercial rivals who have a vested interest” in high-street bookies.

Former party leader Ed Miliband also had an anti-FOBT stance as he campaigned against betting terminals before the 2014 general election.