Mayor Rattenbury has announced he’s legislating to stop the pokie dens installing audio isolation devices.
Mr Rattenbury said an amendment to the Gaming Machine Act is needed to prevent the introduction of new gaming machines with headphones that encourage gamblers to play for longer periods of time.
“Recently gaming machine manufactures have begun making machines with headphones, also called audio isolation devices, which are designed to minimise external distractions and keep gamblers focused on the machines for longer,” said Mr Rattenbury.
“Victoria and NSW have prohibited machines with audio isolation devices, and the ACT needs to do the same.
“We already know that there a significant number of people in the Canberra community who are severely affected by a gambling addiction and between 85% and 96% of those with an addiction play poker machines. We also know that on average for each person who is a problem gambler, seven other people they know are seriously affected by their addiction.
The new Greens Bill will prevent the Gambling and Racing Commissioners from approving machines with audio devices unless the device is specifically for those with a hearing impairment.