Canada’s Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) revealed to the public its system of standards and accreditation for the country’s ninety six casinos and slot venues. In order to support responsible gambling the council also introduced a RG Check, a service that will rate casinos and slots venues that are in compliance with all eight standards of the council. RGC, based in Toronto, calls this “measurable evidence-informed standards.”
Jon Kelly, CEO of RGC, a non-profit organization with almost thirty year of history, commented “These are the most rigorous responsible gambling standards in the world.” Slot venues or casinos wishing to apply for accreditation will need to be reviewed by RGC’s team for a period of four to six months.
Maximum score of a hundred percent can be obtained during accreditation. Standards are called the Responsible Gambling Index. In order to receive accreditation, the venue in question must score at least seventy percent. RGC team’s work is later reviewed by a separate Accreditation board approved by the Canadian gambling laws, which will award the accreditation valid for three years.
Though RGC promises that its standards “promote a high standard of customer protection” and RG Check “increases public confidence” we can understand that the process of accreditation is extremely secretive. Kelly estimated 96 venues in Canada could apply, but until the first accreditation is done, he cannot say how many can be handled at the same time.
In cases where ATMs are placed on gaming floors, 24 hour venues or Canadian poker rooms where free alcohol is served, RGC will deduct points. Gaming machines also need to display responsible gaming messages during operation.
RGS states that “The Index and accreditation process cannot claim, however, to reduce problem gambling. Many of the causes of problem gambling including psychological makeup, social history, peer group influences and many other influences lie well beyond the elements in the program.” RGC also plans to introduce similar standards for online casino in Canada and lotteries.