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Social Cost of Gambling

10 Oct 2011

Q .From what you have read or heard, please select the sum of money from the list below that you think reflects the social cost of problem gamblers in Australia each year?

Total Support Pokies Reform * Oppose Pokies Reform
$10 million 7% 7% 9%
$100 million 19% 19% 22%
$1 billion 18% 20% 13%
$5 billion 14% 18% 9%
$10 billion 8% 11% 5%
Don’t know 33% 25% 42%
*Aggregate figures have been used for Support/Oppose pokies legislation by combining strongly support with support and strongly oppose with oppose.

The most common response amongst respondents was ‘don’t’ know’ (33%).   Out of the figures from which respondents could choose, the most common response was $100 million (19%) and $1 billion (18%).

Fourteen percent answered correctly, estimating the social cost to be approximately $5 billion[1].

Those who support the pokies reform are more likely to guess the social cost to be high with 18% estimating it to be $5 billion and 11% estimating it to be $10 billion.

Those opposed to the reforms were less likely to estimate the social cost to be high, with only 9% believing it to be $5 billion and 5% believing it to be $10 billion.

[1] Productivity Commission, Inquiry Report, Gambling, No.50, 26 February 2010.