Legal limit on gaming machine payouts raised to €500
"It wouldn't take long to gamble a week's wages."
The government is set to introduce a law that will raise the limit of gaming machine payouts to €500.
David Stanton TD has said that the new laws will bring "clarity to the permit and licensing approach to small-scale local gaming and lottery activity, updating certain stake and prize limits and standardising the minimum age for engaging in gambling at 18, along with other provisions."
A change that is provoking worry from gambling addiction activists is the increase the maximum stake on a bet from 3c to €5. The 3c limit hasn't been increased since the original law was introduced within the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956.
At present, the law restricts payouts on gaming machines to 50c. A spokesperson for the government has argued that the current limits on stakes and payouts, set in a bygone area, are difficult to enforce.
Tony O'Reilly, author of Tony 10, a book about his experiences with gambling addiction, wrote on Twitter: "People's lives and families are being torn apart by gambling addiction while we continue to wait for this to happen. We need government funding for research, education and treatment for problem gambling. We need it now."
Problem Gambling Ireland tweeted: "€5 per spin, at 10 spins per minute = €50 per minute. Average take home pay = roughly 600 per week. It wouldn't take long to gamble a week's wages."