The Australian Greens have slammed the Turnbull Government for allowing loopholes that gets Foxtel out of a blanket ban on playing gambling advertising during live sports, and broadcasters playing gambling ads during pre-game entertainment.
“Last year, the Government claimed they’d struck a deal with broadcasters to ban gambling ads during sport broadcasts. We now see the legislation to enforce this shows not all broadcasters are treated equally,” Greens media spokesperson Senator Hanson-Young said.
“Despite the promises from the Government, the legislation to enforce this prohibition contains an escape clause for Foxtel, and allows broadcasters to show gambling during pre-game entertainment, right up until the game starts. Gambling advertising is either wrong or it’s not.
“The Prime Minister spruiked the ban on gambling ads as a ‘delight’ for parents – yet the truth is it doesn’t apply to all broadcasters, with exemptions for Foxtel weakening protections for children and our community.
“Let’s not forget that the Government sweetened the deal for Foxtel when they handed over $30 million of taxpayers’ funds to get them on board their media reform package. What began as a quid pro quo has become nothing more than a handout to a paid television empire.
“The Greens will move to close these loopholes. The current legislation would allow gambling ads to be shown during things like Super Bowl, which we know thousands of Australian young people were watching.
“Relying on the industry to self-regulate is failing to protect our children from exposure to gambling advertising that’s proven to independently influence their thoughts, feelings, preferences and purchasing habits,” Australian Greens gambling spokesperson Senator Andrew Bartlett said.
“Research shows that children who watch sport can typically name several sports betting companies at a young age.
“Closing this loophole is an important step in protecting us from the risk of the next generation being shaped into a new wave of problem gamblers by the cashed-up gambling industry and their lobbyists in Parliament.
“The next step is to kick big money out of politics, because until we do, we will keep seeing the interests of corporate donors like those in the Gambling industry pervert policy outcomes,” he said.