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GAMSTOP, the free national scheme for self-exclusion from online gambling, has reported a 25% increase in registrations in the first six months of 2021, comparative to the same period in 2020.

The surge in registrations is a key finding of the first GAMSTOP bi-annual review, which has been launched to give greater insight into trends on the GAMSTOP platform, and broader insight into gambling behaviours across the UK.

The review found that:

  • In total, more than 40,000 people registered with GAMSTOP in the first half of 2021, with March of 2021 the second biggest month for registrations on record.
  • By the end of June 2021, the total number of GAMSTOP registrants was more than 218,000
  • The gender split of those registered with GAMSTOP is 70% male and 30% female.
  • Of those registered with GAMSTOP, 58% select the maximum exclusion period of five years.
  • Younger people were most likely to register with GAMSTOP: 41% of registrants were in the 25-34 age bracket, a figure rising to 59% when taking into account the wider 18-34 age bracket.

Recent statistics from the Gambling Commission show that growth in online gambling remains the largest combined sector by GGY (Gross Gambling Yield). Online gambling makes up over 50% (52.3%) of the entire gambling market.

The first ever independent evaluation of GAMSTOP, conducted by research agency Sonnet, found that GAMSTOP is used by a broad cross section of ages, ethnicities and socio-economic groups, which suggests that people from all demographics are experiencing problems with their gambling. The survey of 3,300 registered users found that the ethnic makeup of GAMSTOP users corresponds with the broader UK population (89% white, 3% Asian, 2% Black, 1% Mixed).

The socio-economic situation of respondents also varied, with 29% living in households with a pre-tax income of more than £48,000 per annum and 48% in households earning more than £32,000 per annum. More than 75% were in full or part-time employment and 63% had no children in their household.

Fiona Palmer, GAMSTOP CEO, said:

“While it is encouraging to see that consumers are continuing to find GAMSTOP and use it as a crucial safety net in their recovery, this review reinforces the importance of continuing to raise awareness of practical tools that are available to those struggling with gambling-related harm.

Our evaluation results demonstrate that gambling-related harm is an issue that affects people from all walks of life, irrespective of income, location, or gender. It is imperative that we continue to reach people from across the UK, and to give them access to tools that can aid them in their recovery, or form an important preventative measure.”

Stacey Goodwin, a recovering problem gambler and GAMSTOP registrant, said:

“It’s encouraging to see that the number of registrations for a vital service like GAMSTOP is increasing, but it also shows the significant amount of gambling in our society. More needs to be done to support and get the word out about crucial safety nets and services, like GAMSTOP, to ensure that vulnerable people know about them, and most importantly that they use them.”