Midlothian politicians approve of treasury’s fixed odds position

Councillors, MP and MSP met earlier this year to promote the campaign against fixed odds betting terminals. Local Elected Members Cllr C Cassidy (SNP), Cllr M Russell (LAB), C Beattie MSP (SNP), Danielle Rowley MP'(LAB) and Cllr S Curran (LAB)
Councillors, MP and MSP met earlier this year to promote the campaign against fixed odds betting terminals. Local Elected Members Cllr C Cassidy (SNP), Cllr M Russell (LAB), C Beattie MSP (SNP), Danielle Rowley MP'(LAB) and Cllr S Curran (LAB)

Local politicians have welcomed the UK Treasury’s acceptance of a government decision to reduce Fixed-Odd Betting Terminal (FOBT)maximum stakes from £100 to £2.

Midlothian North MSP Colin Beattie (SNP) and Midlothian MP Danielle Rowley (Lab) campaigned on the issue earlier this year with local councillors.

Both wrote to Westminster regarding the current £100 FOBT maximum betting threshold and received responses reflecting the Government’s measures for reducing risks to vulnerable people and children as well as improving protections around online gambling, gambling culture, and advertising.

Colin Beattie MSP said: I appreciate the helpful response from Tracey Crouch as it clarified Westminster’s stance on the issue of FOBT maximum stakes.

“This shows that the UK Government is intent on finding the best solution. Gambling can become a hidden illness with incredibly negative effects.

“FOBTs in particular encourage impulsive decision-making that can become detrimental to people, their families and communities.”

Danielle Rowley MP said: “I am glad that the minister has an understanding of how this issue can impact families. The responsibility is now on the government to take action and legislate on FOBT maximum stakes.

“I look forward to seeing the consultation responses and seeing changes which would protect our communities from the harmful effects of FOBT. However, it is clear that this is an issue that we need to continue to campaign on until effective legislation is passed to limit FOBT maximum stakes.”