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Casino Control Commission Announces Responsible Gambling Awareness Week

The Virgin Islands Casino Control Commission (VICCC or the Commission) has announced it will conduct the first V.I. Responsible Gambling Awareness Week from Dec. 7-12. The Commission, in collaboration with the National Council on Problem Gambling and ABC Behavioral Consulting Services LLC, will hold a series of events throughout the territory to promote responsible gambling. VICCC’s board members are dedicated to improving the lives of problem gamblers through community outreach programs, advocacy, educational training, research and the promotion of public awareness to encourage responsible gambling, according to a press release issued Wednesday by the Commission.
“Our goal is to promote socially responsible gambling,” VICCC Chairman Violet Anne Golden said.
Responsible Gambling Awareness Week is about encouraging the community and the casino industry to embrace the idea that social gambling is responsible gambling, Golden said.
The Commission and its collaborators will host a series of public events, and they will have experts on hand to conduct educational, outreach and training in the community with a general focus on helping citizens to control their gambling at a time when advances in technology and endless opportunities exist for citizens to get involved in gambling. Golden stated that it is difficult for the community to not be exposed to gambling when new advances in smartphone apps and other online sources have created an entire marketplace of opportunities for persons to take risks. The Commission has an obligation to ensure that people receive the help to minimize the risk of their becoming problem gamblers.
The Commission has to maintain an open line of communication with the community that encourages gambling responsibly. While VICCC may be no match for the billion-dollar corporate advertising campaigns, it is imperative it remains an advocate in the community to encourage responsible gambling and maintain a balanced life style. VICCC must encourage them to exercise self-control, put their families first and limit their chances of developing the many serious problems that are attributed to problem gambling, including the major financial problems commonly seen in the downward spiral of a problem gambler, according to Golden.
On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, Dec. 7, 8 and 9, casino management and employees will be provided training by certified specialists. On Thursday, Dec. 10, the Commission will take its message to St. Thomas where certified specialists will be on hand to disseminate information and interact with the community.
On Saturday, Dec. 12, the Commission together with the management of the Sunny Isles Shopping Center on St. Croix will sponsor its “Family First” V.I. Responsible Gaming Awareness event. Families are invited to attend the annual “Picture with Santa Day” at the shopping center, enjoy live music with the Renaissance Band and dance along with the All Ah Wee Quadrille Dancers. There will be lots of surprises for the children and their families. On hand at the event will be problem gambling experts, who will be there to answer questions and provide advice on responsible gambling.

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