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New partnership to tackle gambling-related harms within the Criminal Justice System

Key insight Partnerships 04 August 2022

Interventions Alliance has formed a new partnership with GamCare, the leading gambling support charity, to provide a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) intervention for people in the Criminal Justice System to reduce gambling-related harm and reoffending.

As part of the new partnership, the new programme offers people eight sessions of structured CBT in a group format, that focuses on exploring harmful gambling, its impacts, links to gambling and crime, and supporting change.

In 2017, a study* found that there was a higher prevalence of gambling harms in prison populations compared to the national population. However, there is currently a lack of gambling treatment and support available for people in the Criminal Justice System. The programme will be an opportunity to test and pilot a new approach to supporting people with gambling issues, building on the work that has already been done in relation to gambling and Criminal Justice support over recent years, by GamCare, GamCare’s network partners, and other providers and working groups.

This new programme will complement and add to that work and pilots, by creating new opportunities and partnerships that will enable further support, learning and insights gathering.

Commenting, Suki Binning, Chief Social Worker and Executive Director, Interventions Alliance, said: “We are delighted to announce this partnership with GamCare as we believe there is vital work to be done to support those in the Criminal Justice System who have a gambling addiction. Research on gambling addictions show that those with a gambling addiction are more likely to commit crime, so this intervention is one part of the solution.

“This programme will offer the structured support that those with a gambling addiction desperately need. Our specialists will help participants to recognise their addiction and its impact, including the risks to those around them and themselves. This programme could therefore have a significant impact on improving the mental health of participants, as part of our overall approach to reducing re-offending.”

GamCare is the leading provider of information, advice and support for anyone affected by gambling harms. They also operate the National Gambling Helpline.

Anna Hemmings, CEO at GamCare, said: “We are excited to work with Interventions Alliance on this new partnership. It provides a valuable opportunity to build on the work we already do, combining our gambling support with their criminal justice and offending behaviour expertise.

“We hope this new programme will help tackle the stigma and ultimately reduce gambling related harm in the Criminal Justice System and, by extension, the community.”

Interventions Alliance, part of the Seetec Group, delivers a range of programmes aimed at individuals on their rehabilitation journey across the country. Providing a wide range of support and services from skills training to employment support.

National Gambling helpline: 0808 8020 133