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3885 posts

Uber Geek


# 244984 13-Jan-2019 01:27

I have a close friend that I think has a gambling problem. As he has been borrowing money from me, and I have obtained proof that he has not used the money for the purpose that he claimed.

I suspect that he has caught the gambling “virus” from his mother. As the mother is known among the wider family of being a regular visitor to the Sky City Casino. And the mother has been granted access to the VIP / Premium area of the Casino. No one in the family wants to challenge the mother about her gambling. As She has major chronic health problems that mean She could die at any time. But also could still be alive in 10 years time. And since she is on the benefit and lives in a state house (no real asset's). She is limited in how much damage her gambling could do anyway. So the family just let her be.

However my friend is in the early stages of what would be a very well paying career. Which will also involve access to and managing large sums of money. So if he does have a gambling problem, things will get very ugly.

Question - My friend also has access to the VIP area. But he claims that he only gets access due to his mum having access, claims that VIP members can bring in 1 non member. Is that true? Or do the Casino only grant access if you are regularly gambling large amounts of money? If the latter, that would imply that they have a logging system for how much each person gambles. And is there a way to access that data? Or is just having VIP access definitive proof that someone gambles lots of money?

2nd Question - Does anyone have experience on how to approach talking to and helping someone with a gambling problem? As although me and some other family members are very suspicious. There is a chance that he might only be socially gambling only small amounts of money infrequently. What should I do if he denies that he has a gambling problem?

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1418 posts

Uber Geek

  # 2159905 13-Jan-2019 07:16
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While I don't have direct experience with problem gambling, I do work in the field of gambling policy. I would suggest, in response to your second question that yiu contact the problem gambling foundation and talk to one of their counsellors about your concerns. They will be able to give you professional advice about your friend and how you can best support them. You can also look at the Choice not Chance website ( which has some useful tools to help with your concerns.

Gambling can be a very difficult addiction to confront, as unlike alcohol or drugs there usually aren't physical symptoms like hangovers or blackouts to point to. I think seeking some professional advice is the best course of action.

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  # 2159906 13-Jan-2019 07:27
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Yes you can take 1 person into the VIP access area




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  # 2160453 13-Jan-2019 19:22
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It's an option:

Skycity: Third party exclusion is an action SKYCITY can take if someone who cares about you (a third party) is worried because your gambling seems out of control and is causing harm, but you have said no to self-identified exclusion.

The third party might be a family/whanau member, a friend, an employer, your GP or even a SKYCITY staff member.
If SKYCITY is convinced that the third party’s concern is genuine and justified then it will take the step to exclude you for two years to help you control your gambling.

The exclusion has conditions you must meet to gain re-entry. This is a very serious step for SKYCITY to take, so it will not be taken lightly

Some professional intervention support required at same time for good result maybe. That's likely to be a service Sky City has a list of..

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