Gaming Control Board introduced a new program to help problem gamblers

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – As gambling continues to expand across the state, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has introduced a new program to help problem gamblers.

​They have announced a Self-Exclusion Program for Video Gaming Terminals (VGTs), I-Gaming, and fantasy sports.​​

The program allows people to voluntarily choose a 1-year, 5-year, or lifetime ban from that gambling activity.

​​VGT establishments and operators must refuse wagers and deny gaming privileges to those who are self-excluded.​​

Any winnings that have been found to have been issued to someone on the self-exclusion list will be redirected to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, to be used towards its responsible gambling programs. Those who violate the terms of self-exclusion could be charged with criminal trespassing.

​​”The self exclusion program gives people the opportunity to take control of their addiction. It allows them to put a road block between their gambling behavior and their addiction,” said Elizabeth Lanza, Director of the Office of Compulsive and Problem Gambling at the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board. “We needed to have some type of teeth, if you will, to the program. Something to allow people to say ‘I can’t do this, because I might possibly get arrested.”

​​A self-exclusion program has been in existence for casinos in Pennsylvania since 2006, and has seen about 15,000 problem gamblers request to be put on the list.​​

A link to sign up for the self-exclusion program can be found at https://gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov/?p=48.​

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