Gambling has many adverse impacts on animals as well as people
The Animal Justice Party (AJP) isn’t anti-gambling per-se. If people wish to bet on cards, dice or any other non-animal activity, that’s their choice. Our focus is primarily on stopping gambling involving animals. But when gambling of any kind leads to addiction, or injurious personal behaviour, then legislative restrictions are also warranted.
The AJP recognises that gambling problems cause great distress to many individuals, families and households. The financial loss and debt from gambling problems, in turn, create difficulties and pressures that can lead to mental health issues, social issues, domestic violence and suicide. There is a link between domestic violence and gambling: problem gamblers are 2.5 times more likely to be a perpetrator or recipient of domestic violence. Considering that 3 in 5 Australian households include non-human animals, many animals experience domestic violence.
The AJP recognises that non-human animals are significantly affected by gambling since some of the main activities on which people gamble involve training, racing, fighting and abuse of animals (e.g. horse racing, jumps racing, greyhound racing, illegal dog fights, and illegal cock fights). The gambling industry pervades many areas of our lives, profits from addiction, distress and violence, and has powerful economic influence. Technology and marketing have permitted gambling to develop into a multibillion-dollar industry in which Australians spend more than $24 billion annually. The gambling industry has exceptional access and influence in politics and policy.
The AJP supports measures to address:
- minimising harm
- sponsorship by gambling industries of sporting events
- consumer protection
- funding to political parties, including real-time transparency of political donors
- influence of political parties, including visibility of lobbyists who have access to Ministers, Members of Parliament and Local Government Councillors
- direct and indirect exposure of gambling and promotion of gambling to minors
- funding to gambling industries