BOSTON (WWLP) – In their continued efforts to promote positive play and reduce gambling-related harms, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) is supporting Responsible Gaming Education Week (RGEW), which runs from September 19 through September 25.

This year’s campaign them is “Have a Game Plan”

According to the MGC, a 2014 population survey conducted in Massachusetts found that 2% or roughly 110,000 adult residents met the criteria for problem gambling, and 8% or 440,000 were experiencing harm to a lesser degree. 

The MGC realized the importance of offering options to support safe play, harm reduction, and abstinence and launched GameSense in 2015. The program is a player-focused responsible gaming program that encourages players to adopt behaviors and attitudes that reduce the risk of gambling-related harm. Operated by the Massachusetts Council on Gaming and Health, GameSense Info Centers are located at each casino property and staffed by trained advisors who give players and employees information, tips, and tools to keep gambling a safe and enjoyable experience.

Since the first casino opened in Massachusetts in 2015, more than 1,200 people enrolled in the MGC’s Voluntary Self-Exclusion (VSE) program, supporting individuals who elect to abstain from casino gambling in Massachusetts.

 RGEW was developed by the American Gaming Association in 1998 to prioritize responsible gaming as an integral part of the gaming industry’s daily operations. The annual advocacy week also provides an opportunity to strengthen employee training, promote gaming literacy among casino guests, and further advance responsible gaming programs.