The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) revealed poker machine operators in South Auckland generated NZ$21m in profits in the first quarter of the year.
New Zealand.- Andree Froude, spokeswoman for the Problem Gambling Foundation, has expressed concerns about the recent figures showing the profits made by South Auckland slot machine operators in the first quarter of the year.
“Pokies” generated NZ$21m in profits, lower than the NZ$26m reported in the last three months of 2020.
But Froude said: “That’s still a huge amount of money and there will be harm caused by that much money being lost on pokie machines.”
Like Mackenzie District, South Auckland has approved a “sinking lid” to limit the number of slot machines, or “pokies”. However, Froude argues that there are too many gaming machines.
She said: “You only need to go for a walk in south Auckland to see there are gaming machines everywhere. We need to see change because the system as it stands is broken and pokie machines are only fuelling more poverty.”
In April, the Auckland University of Technology carried out a study to analyse the behaviour of people with gambling addiction problems and found out they tend to pull away from community groups.
Maria Bellringer, Gambling and Addictions Research Centre associate professor, told the RNZ newspaper the finding could help experts identify people with gambling addiction problems more easily.
The study also found that people with gambling addictions have a poorer quality of life and weak health. The Health Promotion Agency reported that about 54,000 people in New Zealand gamble at a harmful level.