August 2015 (Vol. 18, Iss. 3)
|INSIDE THIS ISSUE:|
|From the President|
|From the Executive Director|
|NCPG Strategic Plan|
|NCPG National Awards|
|Fun & Networking at the Conference|
|Lottery Holiday Campaign|
|Helpline Text & Chat|
The 29th National Conference on Problem Gambling was held July 10-11 at the Hilton Baltimore Inner Harbor. A collegial crowd of over 600 attendees (a record-high attendance) were welcomed by Keith Whyte, Executive Director of NCPG and our co-hosts, the Maryland Center for Excellence on Problem Gambling — Lori Rugle, Program Director, and Carl Robertson, Prevention Manager; and the Maryland Council on Problem Gambling — Michael Hundt, Executive Director.
Attendees enjoyed up to four days of education and training, professional development, networking opportunities and more. Professionals were also able to earn up to 30 CEUs. The Keynote address was given by Dr. David Mee-Lee, Chief Editor of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Criteria for the Treatment of Addictive, Substance-Related, and Co-Occurring Conditions. His talk provided very detailed information on the ASAM PPC criteria and how it can be used in the treatment of gambling disorders. The Saturday plenaries were given by Carol O’Hare on her recovery journey and progression, From Anonymity to Advocacy; and Dr. Alex Blaszczynski on Gambling-Related Harms: The Gambling Effects Scale. The main conference offered 46 sessions and 82 speakers.
The Pre-Conference Workshops included 10 sessions with 22 speakers, including a Helpline Symposium. Attendees came from 42 states and 8 countries, including Australia, Austria, Canada, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. There were also 20 exhibitors and a record 45 sponsors. Attendees enjoyed sessions on recovery, gambling in the military, responsible gaming, and much more!
I look forward to my service as president of the board of directors of NCPG. As my introductory statement, I would like to talk about how we identify and serve our stakeholders.
The NCPG 2015-2020 strategic plan was presented at the annual conference in Baltimore. The five goals of the strategic plan are broad in scope and allow for an annual work plan. To make the plan a living and working document we will need to combine the mission and value statements, which gives us the following vision: “To lead state and national stakeholders in the development of comprehensive policy and programs for all affected by problem gambling,” and “We believe that our mission is best served by the collaborative action of a broad range of people and organizations.”
Stakeholders are both contributors to, and recipients of, the NCPG mission and strategic plan. It is always tempting to spend time and energy on those who contribute the most financially. However, the truth of the matter is that much of our attention will be given to those who have little or no financial capability to contribute but make contributions in ways that are not measurable. This means we have to remember our mission and purpose which is ultimately to serve the problem gambler and their family members.
Altruism is not an often-used word in business but perhaps it fits our intention. Matthieu Ricard says, “We have thus far defined altruism as a mental state, a motivation, and intention to fulfill others’ needs, a desire to do good for them or spare them suffering.”
May we wisely use the resources of our stakeholders to address the various needs that arise from problem gambling. Biology, evolution, and organizational development all teach us that groups who cooperate for the well-being of all their members thrive the most and the longest. Individual or special interest groups may thrive in the short term for selfish reasons but will not last through the generations.
Baltimore was big for NCPG: not only did we have 614 conference attendeesóour largest conference ever!- but we also unveiled our 2015-2020 Strategic Plan, elected leaders and celebrated recipients of our National Awards.
My thanks to the Maryland Council on Problem Gambling and the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling, our co-hosts for the 29th National Conference, for their hard work, dedicated vision and personal touch that really made the conference shine this year. The Maryland Behavioral Health Administration provided significant scholarship support that enabled counselors in the state to participate in the worldís oldest and largest conference on gambling addiction. The record number of sponsors who stepped up to the plate deserve thanks as well for their support. I hope the many NCPG Affiliate, Organizational and Individual Members in attendance were as proud as I was of the conference. It is, after all, YOUR event. For more about the conference see pg. 6-12.
I would like to welcome the new Officers and NCPG Board of Directors Members. Wiley Harwell of the Oklahoma Association on Problem and Compulsive Gambling was elected as President. Serving as Vice President is Marlene Warner of the Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling. Ray Pineault of Mohegan Sun returns as Treasurer for another year, and Judge Mark Farrell was elected as Secretary. Thanks again to Immediate Past President Maureen Greeley and outgoing Secretary Rose Gruber for their leadership and dedication.
Robert Jacobson of the California Council on Problem Gambling was elected to his first term to fill the Affiliate seat previously held by Jeff Beck, who was term-limited. Affiliate representatives Wiley Harwell and Rose Gruber were reelected to a second term, as were Organizations representative Ray Pineault and Individuals representative Dr. Marc Potenza. They will all serve a three year term running from July 2015 to July 2018. I also wish to thank retiring Board member Jeff Beck.† As the longtime Affiliate Representative of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey, he provided exceptional energy and dedication to helping problem gamblers and their families, and he will continue to do so as a member of several key NCPG committees and as Clinical Director of the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling. His perspective and contributions as a clinician, lawyer, researcher and recovery advocate will be sorely missed on the Board.
At the Annual Members Meeting (which is held in conjunction with the National Conference) outgoing President Greeley and I provided the members in attendance with information on NCPG programs and finances. In June, total membership was at a record 682, the highest in our history. We made significant progress on our goals for the first half of the year and have a number of additional projects scheduled for the rest of the year, including additional national advocacy to follow up on our historic victory in Congress (see page 5 for more details). I look forward to welcoming you to our 30th National Conference next year as we return to New York. While we’ve come a long way in the past 43 years, we have also remained true to the vision of our founders.
In June, the Members of NCPG held the annual election for the Board of Directors. Each year, a minimum of five seats are open; nominees must be current NCPG members (among other criteria). Robert Jacobson was elected to serve a three-year term (2015-2018) for an Affiliates seat. Robert has been the Executive Director of the California Council on Problem Gambling†since 2011. His unique perspective on responsible gambling is derived from both his personal†and professional experiences. Robert grew up in Las Vegas, where his family worked in the gaming industry for over 25 years, and†he followed suit, taking his first casino job in 1995. In 1998 he moved to California, where he†continued to work in gaming until 2010. His casino experience includes gaming operations, marketing, project management and human resources.
By Keith Whyte, Executive Director, NCPG
At the conference, we introduced the NCPG 2015-2020 Strategic Plan to our attendees. Going forward, NCPG’s annual goals will be tied to the larger objectives in the Plan. I would like to call your attention to the groundbreaking Principles adopted by the Board as part of the Plan. They articulate our core beliefs and provide a better understanding of the philosophy that guides us. I believe that if Monsignor Dunne and Dr. Custer were alive today, they would recognize and approve of the Principles. And next year we’ll return to New York – the birthplace of NCPG and the home of the first National Conference on Problem Gambling – to honor those pioneers and to plan for our future. I look forward to working with our new leadership and our members to advocate based on these principles and to lead all stakeholders in the development of comprehensive services for all those affected by problem gambling. Through our efforts we will improve societal health and wellness by reducing the personal, social and economic costs of problem gambling.
The Board of Directors of the National Council on Problem Gambling resolves:
Click here for complete details of the Strategic Plan.
By Keith Whyte, Executive Director, NCPG
In the June session of Congress, NCPG scored a historic victory as the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) included provisions to study gambling and gambling addiction among military personnel. This was the advocacy goal we set for 2015. Our strategy leveraged our organizational structure: direct visits to Congressional staff by Executive Director Keith Whyte in Washington, DC with tailored requests for advocacy at the state level. Specific targets included identifying states with Senators who served on the Armed Services Committee. This ‘top down, bottom up’ approach maximizes our structure and resources. NCPG does not have funds to hire lobbyists or make political contributions. But direct personal contacts by members to their Congressional representatives about issues that are personally important to them are impactful.
In conjunction with the Boardís annual retreat in Washington, DC we scheduled a legislative briefing on the Hill regarding gambling and addiction in the military that included NCPG experts and Dave Yeager, a recovering gambler who developed a severe gambling addiction as an Army sergeant stationed in Korea. This helped build additional momentum for our efforts. NCPG staff also arranged dozens of meetings with Members of Congress and their staff and prepared information packets.
On the Senate side our amendment was introduced by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and co-sponsored by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR). The House amendment was carried by Rep. Tim Walz (D-MN) with the support of Rep. Joseph Pitts (R-PA). The lead sponsors’ interest in gambling issues was sparked by personal visits to their DC offices by NCPG Board members from their states – Marlene Warner and Don Feeney, from Massachusetts and Minnesota respectively. NCPG staff were able to use the contacts generated by these visits to describe national-level problem gambling issues, provide background, draft language to address our priority areas and conduct a grassroots campaign to garner support.
The final language in the Senate bill requires the Comptroller General and Government Accountability Office to perform a:
The next step for NCPG is to provide some guidance to the Comptroller General and GAO to try to make sure they address the important issues that most concern us.
Hopefully we’ll look back at these studies as a turning point in our long struggle to get the Department of Defense to prevent and treat gambling addiction.
|Each year NCPG honors individuals and organizations for their dedicated work on problem gambling and responsible gaming issues in order to spotlight exceptional service, innovative ideas and hard work.The 2015 National Awards were presented at the National Conference. Chip Polston, Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling, chaired the Awards Committee and outgoing President Maureen Greeley served as MC at the awards ceremony. We applaud all the nominees and congratulate this year’s worthy recipients. For more information on how to submit nominations for 2016 please visit the Programs & Resources page at www.ncpgambling.org.|
|The Lifetime Research Award was given to Dr. Howard Shaffer, Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Director of the Division on Addictions at the Cambridge Health Alliance. The award honors a person for exceptional long-standing achievement in the field of research on problem gambling. Dr. Shaffer’s publication history dates back to 1979 and now includes well over 200 chapters, journal articles and reviews. One supporter wrote: “I would be hard-pressed to name another contemporary researcher in the problem gambling field who has made a greater contribution to the scholarly literature.”|
|James Pappas, Executive Director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania (CCG-PA), received the Monsignor Joseph Dunne Lifetime Award for Advocacy. This award is given in recognition of at least 20 years of dedication to improving the lives of problem gamblers and their families through advocacy, research, training, or the promotion of public awareness. Described as someone with the “compassion to help individuals in need at any time of the day, his leadership at the local, state and national level, and his 35 years of selfless service given to the field is truly remarkable,” Jim was also recognized as a pioneer in the development of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of Pennsylvania and a determined advocate. The award was accepted on his behalf by Deputy Director of the CCG-PA, Josh Ercole.|
The British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) received this award to recognize their outstanding commitment to social responsibility as it relates to problem gambling. BCLC staff developed the innovative GameSense materials; they also organize the influential New Horizons responsible gaming conference and the organization serves as a leader in the field. Kim Steinbart (below left) accepted the award.
Dr. Henrietta Bowden-Jones was this year’s recipient of the annual Joanna Franklin Award for Direct Service. She is founder and Director of the National Problem Gambling Clinic in Fulham, London. One nominator wrote: “Her work has made a massive difference to those suffering from problem gambling in Britain, for without her unique vision and mission no proper clinical services for gamblers would be available here at all.” Joanna Franklin was the founder of the Maryland Council on Problem Gambling and instrumental in bringing the National Conference to Maryland — although her sudden passing in 2013 was a huge blow to the field, she was with us in spirit in Baltimore.
The 2015 recipients of this award are Dr. Kahlil Philander and Dr. Terri-Lynn Mackay for their paper Online Gambling Participation and Problem Gambling Severity: Is There a Causal Relationship? The nomination materials state, “In addition to its [topical] relevance, the authors employ a methodology that is imaginative and thorough. It presents a rare combination of analytical elegance and practical significance.”
This award for the outstanding graduate doctoral dissertation in the area of problem gambling went to Jessica McBride. The award is given to the applicant judged to have the best potential to contribute to our scientific knowledge and clinical understanding of gambling addiction. Her dissertation included an extensive survey of young people’s gambling and gaming activities to examine how certain forms of gaming activity are related to gambling. She recently completed her doctorate at McGill University.
The 2015 recipient of this award is Guillaume Pagnier (below right), a second-year graduate student at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. He received the Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award for The Relationships Between Personality, Arousal and the Illusion of Control in a Gambling Task, described as a “novel study that analyzes how an individual’s personality affects their physiological reaction to gambling.”
The Website Award was presented to the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling (MCOEPG) for an outstanding website that has best raised public awareness of problem/pathological gambling, below left.
The Public Awareness Award was also given to the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling and Med School Maryland Productions.
The Holiday Responsible Gaming Campaign Award is for the best material prepared by a lottery in support of the annual holiday lottery campaign, a grassroots campaign offered and coordinated by NCPG in partnership with the International Centre on Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors each year in December. The 2015 winner was the Hoosier Lottery (Indiana), represented by Jade Luchauer and Katie Carlson, below right.
The Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling (ECPG) and GoodTherapy.org were presented with the Media Award for their Twitter chat during Problem Gambling Awareness Month— in a one hour conversation they received more than 13,000 impressions. Kristen West (below left), ECPG Outreach Coordinator, accepted the award.
The North Carolina Education Lottery received the Newsletter Award for Aiming for Responsible Gaming, a semi-annual newsletter dedicated to responsible gaming. Bre Hager (below center), Responsible Gaming Specialist, accepted.
People’s Choice Award: The most popular print public awareness message as voted on by attendees at the conference was Don’t Be Beaten by a Game from the Problem Gamblers Help Network of West Virginia (PGHNWV). Steve Burton (below right), accepted the award.
The Jim Wuelfing Annual Award for Prevention was given to Liz McCall (below, far left) of the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling. The award recognizes outstanding achievement in advocacy, development, integration, outreach, research or training in the area of prevention of problem gambling. The nomination noted, “Her work has an emphasis on reaching out to at-risk and underserved populations. She is a consistent and dependable partner in advancing prevention and problem gambling initiatives, and has unique and forward-thinking ideas which she pursues and brings back to partners and project participants.”
Prevention Showcase Awards
The Prevention Showcase was organized by the NCPG Prevention Committee, co-chaired by Susan McLaughlin and Julie Hynes (below, middle left).
‘Excellence in Prevention Showcase’ Award: Amanda Burke (below, middle right).
‘Best in Prevention Showcase’ Award: Maryland Smart Choices – Dr. Brittany R. Parham,
Jennifer Lease, and Kelly Willis, all of Center for School Mental Health, with Carl Robertson, Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling (below, right).
Major thanks go to our sponsors: Four Winds Casino Resort, IGT, Las Vegas Sands Corporation, MGM Resorts International, San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, AGEM, Mohegan Sun, Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino, and SAMHSA/CSAT. Their support makes the conference possible and helps keep registration fees affordable. Sponsors receive visibility among their peers in a cost-effective way, along with public acknowledgement of the organization’s support and engagement in responsible gaming and problem gambling. Thank you!
To become a sponsor for the 2016 National Conference, contact Barbara Rollins, Deputy Director for Advancement, at 202-547-9204 x 25 or BarbaraR-at-ncpgambling.org.
Networking is always a valuable benefit and popular reason to attend the National Conference on Problem
Gambling. It’s an excellent way to see old friends and make new connections with whom to exchange ideas
and help all year long! This year’s networking events:
• Welcome Reception sponsored by Maryland Live! Casino and the Problem Gamblers Help Network of
West Virginia with the theme ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame’
• Friday Night Highlight event at the American Visionary Art Museum with dinner, live Jazz and access to
the museum for the evening as well as a special display of
Gambling Recovery artwork curated by volunteers of the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling
• Awards Lunch with guided regional networking
• Recovery Fun Run/Walk for some welcome exercise
• Morning and afternoon coffee breaks each day
• Baseball game: Orioles vs Nationals
Many thanks to all of the exhibitors who brought their information and engagement to the Conference!
Their enthusiasm and genuine concern for the issue of problem gambling bring energy and life to the
NCPG National Conference on Problem Gambling. If you are looking for information and services in problem gambling, please take a moment to explore these Exhibitors. Contact information can be found here.
Algamus Gambling Treatment Services Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches
C.A.R.E. Treatment Center
Dr. Valerie Lorenz
Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery
Keystone Treatment Center
Louisiana Assoc. on Compulsive Gambling
Maryland Council on Problem Gambling
Maryland Center of Excellence on
Nebraska Council on Compulsive Gambling
New York Council on Problem Gambling
Professional Books Project Turnabout
Voices of Problem Gambling Recovery, Inc.
Washington Adventist University
The following quotes were provided by scholarship recipients and treatment providers for the National Conference on Problem Gambling. The Conference provides top-notch training. This is just a glimpse of the value that is offered when treatment providers attend the Conference.
“There was perhaps no better way to kick off the conference than with Dr. David Mee-Lee, father of the ASAM PPC. I especially enjoyed his references to other process addictions and how we all struggle with insurance reimbursements. His talk went on to explain how to use the ASAM in reference to gambling disorders and this is something I plan to do in my own practice.” – Ronsonlyn Clark (KY)
“Dr. Rani Hoff’s talk about gambling disorder in the veteran population [was] very interesting and the statistics she reported quite striking, [especially ] the difference between how the DOD sees problem gambling vs. the treatment sector at the VA. This can help me bring information to my team about the inaccurate information given to our active duty military around gambling being a “characterological” issue vs an addictive disorder.” – Sabrina Heller (PA)
“I achieved many firsts during the three days of the conference that helped me grow as a clinician and that helped set me on the path to starting my work with problem gamblers. It was the first time I had listened to someone tell their story of compulsive gambling addiction, the devastating damage it had done, and the process of recovery. These stories helped me better understand the similarities and differences in the addiction and recovery process for problem gambling and substance use.” – David Bauerkemper (TX)
Here are some other things that treatment providers who attended the Conference noted anonymously on the Conference Evaluation Forms:
“Wide variety of breakout sessions to choose from; esp. liked ‘Let’s ROCK’ session – helpful insight from addicts.”
“Practical workplace applications and networking opportunities.”
“Material presented that will improve clinical skills and community efforts.”
“Some interesting sessions like the one on gambling courts, the family therapy approach that talked about relevant
workbooks, and Carol’s lunchtime plenary was inspiring.”
“Ideas with regard to evolution of thinking on the neurobiological commonalities of addiction.”
Top reasons for attending:
Attendees liked best:
• “Wide range of diverse speakers and the tangible support of the gaming industry; practical applications.”
• “Friendliness of the Members, staff, and volunteers.”
• “Each breakout will help me in my work.”
The Lottery Holiday Campaign encourages parents and loved ones to be aware of the risks of giving lottery products as holiday gifts to minors. Research shows that the majority of adolescents gamble at least occasionally, and that lottery products may be a gateway to problem gambling. Youth gambling has been shown to be linked to other risk-taking and addictive behaviors such as smoking, drinking and drug use.
NCPG and International Centre on Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors are once again partnering with lotteries in the United States, Canada and around the world to send this important message. We welcome lottery organizations who wish to partner with us in this educational campaign, or who wish to utilize our free resources (including press release samples) to launch their own independent campaigns on this important topic. Please contact Amy Feinberg to sign up or for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NCPG launched the Next Generation Helpline in March 2015 and we are pleased to say it has been a great success! Hundreds of gamblers and their loved ones from all over the country are seeking help through text and chat 24/7. For the initial phase of the text and chat service, the Louisiana Assoc. on Compulsive Gambling is handling the response duties.
Now NCPG is offering all Helpline Network call centers significant discounts to purchase text and chat services through NCPG (much as call centers currently receive discounts on long distance calls though our contract with CenturyLink).
With high interest from at least seven Affiliates and call centers, we are moving ahead with getting as many call centers integrated into the text and chat platform as soon as possible.
Call centers with existing iCarol accounts are easily integrated into the NCPG text and chat platform since it is also hosted by iCarol. Participants pay a monthly subscription fee to NCPG in addition to their existing charge directly to iCarol under their existing contract. NCPG members receive a significant discount.
Call centers without iCarol accounts who wish to access the NCPG text & chat services need to purchase one through NCPG’s program. Our
program offers participants almost a 50% discount on the standard iCarol pricing, and NCPG members receive further discounts. These prices are only available through NCPG. Please contact Amy Feinberg for more information at email@example.com
|NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals||Oct 9-13||Bethesda, MD|
|NASPL (National Assoc. of State and Provincial Lotteries) – includes RG Training||Oct 12-16||Dallas, TX|
|Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling – state conference||Oct 27||Groton, CT|
|New York Council on Problem Gambling – state conference||Nov 4-5||Albany, NY|
|National Prevention Network||Nov 17-19||Seattle, WA|
|La Fleur’s 2015 Lottery Conclave & Interactive Summit||Dec 1-4||Orlando, FL|
|British Columbia Lottery Corporation – New Horizons in Responsible Gaming Conference||Feb 1-4||Vancouver, BC|
|California Office of Problem Gambling Summit||Mar 7-8||CA|
|Rhode Island Council on Problem Gambling – state conference||Mar 11||RI|
|Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling: Focus on the Future Conference||Apr 26-29||Portland, OR|
|La Fleur’s 2016 Lottery Symposium & Retailing Summit and Strikes! for Responsible Gaming||May 3-6||Washington, DC|
|16th International Conference on Gambling & Risk Taking||Jun 6-10||Las Vegas, NV|
Your Membership Benefits
Organizational Membership is for corporations and other businesses, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies, including Tribal entities. Click here to see a list of current Organizational Members.
There are three levels. Nonprofits and government agencies may participate using substantially discounted rates. Depending on the level chosen, a number of staff or Board members are entitled to Individual Memberships as part of the benefits of the Organizational Membership. For details, visit www.ncpgambling.org/joinnow.
Organizational members play an important role in supporting NCPG — thank you!
| Our purpose: To serve as the national advocate for programs and services to assist all affected by problem gambling.
Our vision: To improve health and wellness by reducing the personal, social and economic costs of problem gambling.
Our mission: To lead state and national stakeholders in the development of comprehensive policy and programs for all those affected by problem gambling.NCPG is neither for nor against legalized gambling. Our primary concern is to help problem gamblers and their families.NCPG is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions are tax-deductible in accordance with the law. Tax ID #51-0141872.If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call or text the National Problem Gambling Helpline at 1-800-522-4700; or chat via www.ncpgambling.org/chat, for confidential help, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from anywhere in the United States.