Michigan regulator urges parents to discuss responsible gaming behaviours

The Michigan Gaming Control Board has advised that parents should talk to children about responsible gaming behaviours to avoid potential problems from occurring later in life.

The regulator has said that the ‘tween’ years could be the best time to teach children about responsible gaming because “about seven out of 10 students ages 14 to 19 will wager money on poker and other games this year”.

To combat such potential issues, the MGCB advises the use of parental control on electronic devices, as well as not leaving credit card and personal ID information stored on devices shared by younger family members or in other places where youngsters could gain access.

Furthermore, the regulator cites International Center for Responsible Gaming research that suggests between two per cent of seven per cent of young people experience a gambling problem.

The ICRG suggests 10 steps to help youth avoid risky behaviours, these are starting education earlier, listening to problems, educating yourself, discussing realities, knowing normal behaviours, setting rules, monitoring activities, being involved, helping children to develop coping skills and not sending mixed messages.  

“Parents should discuss responsible gaming with their children before they attend high school,” said Henry Williams, executive director, Michigan Gaming Control Board. 

“National studies have shown young people gamble in betting pools, while on the basketball court sidelines and on video games or even try to do so online or at a casino. As a parent and a former social worker, I know how important it is for parents to look for signs of problem behaviours and to take an active role in educating children to understand consequences of their behaviour.”