A new coalition of provincial gaming corporations has formed in Canada. Their aim is to combat illegal online gambling. The coalition is urging the federal government to act. They want all unlicensed online gambling activities to be shut down.
Called the ‘Provincial Lottery Corporations’ the coalition comprises the following:
- British Columbia Lottery Corporation
- Alberta Gaming, Liquor & Cannabis
- Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation
- Atlantic Lottery Corporation
Recently, additional types of online betting have been legalized in Canada. Although only through government-sponsored regulation and licensing. The coalition aims to tackle the lingering unlicensed, illegal online gambling market in Canada. They believe unlicensed and unregulated online operators are recklessly promoting gambling. This is mainly done via misleading promotions and advertising. Without action by the provincial and federal governments, they believe consumers are at ever-greater risk.
Ontario Leads the Way
Ontario is creating its own licensing system for Canadian gambling sites. Otherwise, each body in the coalition represents a monopoly in their province. They are further controlled by their provincial government. The coalition says that government involvement helps to protect the consumer by offering:
- Controlled and safe betting environments
- Protection from illicit and predatory practices
- Proper age-restriction
- Resources and policies to support healthier gambling
- Accountability to the public and to government legal policy
The coalition has further warned of illegal offshore operators. They say these operators become particularly active during big sporting events. They commonly utilize free-to-play mirror sites to draw customers. They also promote their operations with misleading advertising.
Creating Public Awareness
The coalition wants to raise public awareness. They also want to advise commercial media platforms to reject illegal gambling-related advertising. Otherwise, the group is urging the federal government to shut down all unlicensed operators in the country.
Patrick Daigle of the Atlantic Lottery Corporation claims that most Canadians are still generally unaware. Most are unsure of whether online casinos and sports betting sites are legal. He believes a significant amount of money could go back into civil infrastructure and services. But, if illegal and offshore operators exist, much of the money vanishes.
Manny Atwal of the Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Corporation has made similar statements. He believes that profits returned to provincial coffers will go a long way. Particularly in funding healthcare and public services. However, he has warned that unless unlicensed operators get shut down, those profits are lost. Instead of going back into the Canadian economy, they disappear into the pockets of a few individuals.