Washington, DC – This March, the National Council on Problem Gambling will host the 14th annual Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM) in collaboration with its affiliates, members and corporate partners across the country.
Approximately 2 million U.S. adults, or 1% of the population, are estimated to meet criteria for serious gambling problems, and another 4-6 million (2-3%) would be considered to have moderate gambling problems; yet for many, gambling remains a hidden addiction. The estimated national social cost to families and communities due to bankruptcy, divorce, job loss, home loss, and criminal justice costs associated with problem gambling is $6.7 billion each year.
This year’s PGAM theme, “Have the Conversation,” focuses on the importance of an open dialogue and candid discussion about problem gambling. A variety of media materials will be used throughout the month to highlight the common warning signs of problem gambling and bring attention to the resources available for those struggling with a gambling problem. NCPG’s state affiliates and members, both individual and organizational, will offer local programs specifically geared to their communities.
Problem Gambling Awareness Month will also feature Gambling Disorder Screening Day on March 13, 2018 in collaboration with Cambridge Health Alliance. Screening Day is an international movement designed to support health care providers in the identification of gambling problems. Gambling disorders lead to financial, emotional, social, occupational and physical harms, yet many cases go undetected, due to limited assessment for this problem. Screening Day addresses the imperative and provides tools to detect gambling-related problems as early as possible.
“Problem Gambling Awareness Month is an important time for us to reach new audiences with critical information about prevention, education and treatment for Problem Gambling.” said NCPG Executive Director, Keith Whyte.
If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call or text the National Problem Gambling Helpline Network at 1-800-522-4700 or visit www.ncpgambling.org/chat for confidential help.
About the National Council on Problem Gambling
NCPG is the national advocate for problem gamblers and their families. NCPG is neutral on legalized gambling and works with all stakeholders to promote responsible gaming. For more information on the 32nd National Conference on Problem Gambling, visit www.ncpgambling.org/conference.