26th November 2018

'26th November 2018' image

The proliferation of gambling in Ireland in recent years has become a big problem, which Declan Lynch and Tony O'Reilly spoke about at length on The Last Word earlier this year.

For this week's Monday Debate, our panel of guests discussed the amount of money being spent on gambling, the addiction it's causing and the damage it's doing, and what can be done to stop it.

Professor Colin O'Gara, Consultant Psychiatrist with expertise in addiction at Saint John of God Hospital, says gambling is addictive because it's attractive, and that what is needed in Ireland is a regulator.

"Gambling disorder is a medical condition. Gambling is fun for some, but for others it is devastating."

David Hickson, Director of the Gaming and Leisure Association of Ireland and MD of the Fitzwilliam Card Club, says there are three pillars of responsible gambling -- individuals, operators and legislators: "Without the legislator, the rest seem to crumble."

They were joined by Aaron Rogan, journalist with The Times Ireland Edition, Rob Hartnett, founder and CEO of Sport for Business, and Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan, who is concerned about the number of young people who have turned to gambling.

Listen to Podcast here