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Tackling the Stigma of gambling harm

As the league campaigns throughout the Scottish football pyramid get underway, it’s a good time to think about how gambling affects us and those around us. Problem gambling can be difficult to talk about, but our partners at GambleAware have plenty of advice, tools and support to help.

If you’re worried about how gambling is making you feel, or it’s affecting someone you care about, talking to someone can really help. So, let’s open up about gambling. Worrying about being judged is one of the biggest barriers that prevents people seeking help and talking openly about their experience.

Start the conversation

The first step is to start talking. The best way to start a conversation is to show empathy and reassure them that you’re not going to judge them. Try and avoid language or tones that could feel like you’re shaming or blaming the person.

GambleAware’s helpful language guide provides more advice on what language to use to help the person feel safe and speak openly. There is also a list of useful prompts and questions on their website that can help start a conversation about gambling.

Direct people to the support they need

There are many support services available for people who are experiencing gambling harms.

In the first instance you might like to direct them to GambleAware’s website where they can find lots of advice and tools, and they’ll be provided with free, tailored support, should they want it.

If you think someone requires more urgent support, you can direct them to the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133, where they can speak to an advisor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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