Stop Predatory Gambling (SPG) wants 45 states in the country to ban lottery betting for the next 30 days.
An anti-gambling organization in the United States wants 45 states in the country to ban lottery betting for the next 30 days.
On Monday, letters were sent from Stop Predatory Gambling (SPG) to attorney generals and governors in 45 states and the District of Columbia, asking for lottery betting to be immediately suspended for at least 30 days after stimulus payments from the government are received.
State lotteries include but are not limited to jackpot draw, scratch-off tickets and video lottery terminals. The proposed lottery ban would temporarily halt all of this.
In the letter, National Director of SPG, Les Bernal, said: “We are writing to call on you to immediately shut down the marketing and selling of all state lottery gambling games until the financial turmoil caused by the coronavirus has passed.
“It is essential that these games be shut down between now and at least 30 days after federal stimulus payments are received by American families.
“The reason is simple. Federal tax dollars are being sent to American families in order to put food on the table, make rent or mortgage payments, or provide for other daily necessities – not to subsidise state lotteries.
“There is a mountain of facts showing many citizens gamble on the lottery to change their financial condition, and even more so when they are feeling a sense of desperation.
“State governments have turned a nation of small earners, who could be small savers, into a nation of habitual gamblers on course to lose more than $1trillion of wealth to government-sanctioned gambling over the next eight years.
“At least half of this wealth – $500billion – will be lost to state lotteries. It’s America’s most-neglected problem today.”
Only Utah, Nevada, Alabama, Hawaii and Alaska don’t have a statewide lottery so remain unaffected by the proposed ban, although in February Alaska continued to push forward to change its regulations.