HELPING YOU TO STAY IN CONTROL

Whilst most people see a visit to BJ’s Bingo as a fun and sociable way to spend their time, a small minority find that playing the slot machines or bingo can become a problem.

Many customers don’t even see bingo as gambling, however, gambling can affect people, and some are more vulnerable than others, just as they can be with alcohol and other drugs.

At BJ’s Bingo, we take the issue of problem gambling seriously. We also take responsibility for protecting our customers by providing a safe and responsible environment in our clubs as well as being committed to providing support to those who find it hard to control their gambling. This information is for all customers, offering useful info and tips to help everyone play responsibly, avoid problems and Keep It Fun.

However, at the same time, it also offers practical help and advice for those who may have difficulty keeping control of their gambling. Information is provided on how to voluntarily self-exclude nationally from land-based bingo clubs in the UK.

This guide also includes information on where to find more specialist help, if required, from the leading support agencies such as GamCare.

HOW CAN I TELL IF I MIGHT HAVE A PROBLEM?

If you think that your gambling may be getting out of control ask yourself the following questions…

  • Do you feel you have put your education or job at risk because of gambling?
  • Do you chase losses by continuing to gamble when on a losing streak?
  • When you win do you have an overwhelming desire to win more?
  • Do you ever gamble until you completely run out of money?
  • Have you lied, stolen or borrowed to get money for gambling?
  • Are you reluctant to spend your money on anything else?
  • Do you ever gamble for longer, or more often, than you had planned?
  • Do you ever gamble to escape negative elements of your life?
  • Do you feel depressed or suicidal because of your gambling?
  • Have you ever sold any possessions to get money to gamble or pay gambling debts?

WHAT DO I DO IF I THINK I HAVE A PROBLEM?

The first step in taking back control is, to be honest with yourself and accept that there may be a problem.

Talk to the Duty Manager in confidence at your local BJ’s Bingo. They understand the issues involved and can provide you with information or put you in contact with qualified counselors. Alternatively, speak to someone else who you feel you can trust.

PRACTICAL STEPS TO HELP YOU GAIN CONTROL

  • Stop all gambling to break the habit.
  • Ask someone you trust to handle your money for an agreed amount of time e.g. three months.
  • Leave your cashpoint, debit, or credit cards at home and only bring a limited amount of cash with you.
  • Use a calendar to mark each day you don’t gamble so that you can see the progress you make.
  • Reward yourself after a ‘gambling free period by treating yourself with some of the money, you have saved.
  • If all else fails – stop gambling. Self-exclude nationally from all bingo clubs in the UK by enrolling in the national scheme. Just speak to one of our managers who will help with the quick and simple enrolment process.

HOW WE CAN HELP YOU KEEP IT FUN?

Be assured that we only want the best for our customers, and we will provide help and support to help you keep in control of your gambling by:

  • Ensuring our staff are fully trained to enable them to advise customers on how to get help.
  • Offering the option to self-exclude nationally from all bingo clubs in the UK. The scheme prevents any further visits for a minimum of 6 months. You can easily enroll in the national scheme by speaking with one of our managers. Alternatively, you can self-exclude nationally by following the process detailed on the Bingo Association website. www.bingo-association.co.uk
  • Providing information detailing how to prevent and control problem gambling.
  • Working closely with charities and support groups that provide assistance for problem gamblers.

BINGO INDUSTRY SELF-EXCLUSION SCHEME

  • Q: What are my options for self-exclusion?
  • A: If you wish to exclude from BJ’s Bingo (or any other land-based bingo operator), you will automatically be enrolled in the national scheme.

 

  • Q: What is the National Scheme and where can I get more information?
  • A: The Bingo Association has introduced a national scheme that enables a customer to self-exclude from every UK bingo club with just one request. Please ask one of our managers to provide you with further details of the scheme, including terms and conditions.

 

  • Q: How do I join the National Scheme?
  • A: Ask a manager or a team member and a manager will speak with you and take some basic details along with a photo and signature. By joining the scheme you are providing permission to share your self-exclusion with other bingo operators using the secure national database.

 

  • Q: How long will I be excluded for?
  • A: The minimum period of self-exclusion you can request is six months, and your exclusion will automatically remain in force for a further period of 6 months at which time it will then lapse. You can apply for reinstatement at any time following your stated exclusion period.

 

  • Q: Who is responsible for keeping me out of Bingo Clubs?
  • A: You are primarily responsible, however, bingo clubs participating in the scheme will do all they reasonably can to help you.

 

  • Q: What if I only want to exclude from BJ’s Bingo?
  • A: It is not possible to self-exclude from BJ’s Bingo clubs only. Any customer wishing to self exclude from BJ’s (or any other bingo operator) will need to join the national scheme.

 

  • Q: What other steps should I consider taking?
  • A: We would recommend that you exclude yourself from all other forms of gambling that you use or may be tempted to use, such as casinos, betting shops, and online gambling sites. Ask a manager for further information and help with this.

HOW DO I GET ADDITIONAL HELP?

If you or someone you know is unable to control their gambling, the following associations are available to help:

  • National Gambling Helpline: 0808 8020 133
    Information, advice, and counseling for individuals, their family, and friends who have concerns about problem gambling.
    www.gamcare.org.uk

 

  • Gamblers Anonymous:
    A self-help fellowship of compulsive gamblers wanting to address their gambling problems. Their sister organisation GamAnon runs support groups for partners/families of compulsive gamblers. Groups are held weekly nationwide.
    www.gamblersanonymous.org.uk

 

  • Gordon Moody Association Tel: 01384 241 292
    A hostel providing accommodation, counseling and rehabilitation for compulsive gamblers.
    www.gordonmoody.org.uk

 

  • National Debtline Tel: 0808 808 4000
    Advice and support to help deal with debts in a proactive and informed way. Self-help packs are sent free of charge to those with debt problems.
    www.nationaldebtline.org.uk