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GAA and GPA move to tackle gambling issues

Updated: Monday, 27 Jan 2014 20:59 | Comments

GPA supremo Dessie Farrell has emphasised the importance of educating players on the potential dangers of gambling
GPA supremo Dessie Farrell has emphasised the importance of educating players on the potential dangers of gambling

The GAA and GPA have today announced guidelines on gambling for club and inter-county players, and the wider GAA community.

With problems associated with gambling on the rise, the two organisations have attempted to educate their members about the issues involved.

Two booklets containing guidelines on gambling and Gaelic games have been published and will be distributed nationally.

Since the GPA established its counselling service for inter-county players in 2010 with the support of the GAA, concerns over problem gamblers in their ranks have risen as cases presenting to the service continue to increase.

Next to depression, problem gambling is the second highest cause of emotional distress among the inter-county playing body.

GPA chief executive Dessie Farrell said: “Since our counselling service for county players started to reflect increasing problems among our membership with gambling, we felt it was necessary to isolate this issue and help educate our members as to the dangers.

“There are two major areas of concern for the GPA - the rise in gambling addiction and the potential for match-fixing or spot-fixing down the line.

“While the numbers suffering with addiction are still relatively small, they are rising.”

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