Australian Greens gambling spokesperson, Senator Richard Di Natale, joined Tasmanian Senator, Peter Whish-Wilson, in Hobart today to announce the Greens policy on pokies for the 2013 election and call on Prime Minister Rudd to get behind pokies reform.
"This parliament missed the opportunity to comprehensively deal with the harms from problem gambling but a new government has the opportunity to put pokies back on the political agenda," said Senator Di Natale.
"Today the Australian Greens commit to pursuing $1 bet limits on pokies during the next parliament because it is the simplest, cheapest and most effective way to reduce the harm from these machines.
"Instead of losing thousands of dollars in an hour, punters betting a maximum of $1 per spin would only lose an average of $120 an hour. It's about making sure kids aren't left hungry or homeless because the families rent and grocery money was sucked up by a poker machine in a few of hours.
"We also call on Andrew Wilkie to recommit to $1 bet limits ahead of mandatory pre-commitment. If the next parliament provides further opportunities for reform we need to work together to ensure that $1 bet limits are adopted."
Tasmanian Greens Senator, Peter Whish-Wilson said the Tasmanian Greens have demonstrated how much they care about the harms caused by pokies.
"The Tasmanian Greens have been strong advocates for $1 bet limits in both the federal and state parliaments.
"The Greens are the only party that has the courage to stand up to the big end of town and put people's interests first. If, like the Greens, you also care about protecting our communities from the harms of pokies then stand with us."