News release: Reducing Gambling Harms – Call for Evidence by CfGS

Posted on 28/01/2020 by Jenny Manchester.



  • Is your Council working in partnership to understand and tackle gambling harms?
  • Is your scrutiny function supporting this work in anyway – through oversight or policy development?
  • Would your scrutiny function like to do more to review partnership activity and access CfGS expert support and facilitation to carry out this work?   

A new Centre for Governance and Scrutiny (CfGS) research project has been launched to review and consider new ways to improve the scrutiny of activity to tackle gambling harms.

CfGS will bring together research and evidence from around the country drawing on existing scrutiny activity and learning through practical work in three councils, supported by funding approved by the Gambling Commission.

CfGS is calling for local authorities to provide details of scrutiny work related to local strategies and activities to tackle gambling harms. Expressions of interest are also sought from councils wishing to take part in local inquiry days providing an opportunity to access CfGS expert support and facilitation to explore in more detail local activity and identify areas where scrutiny could add value. The insight and learning will be shared via national learning events and a new publication.

Jacqui McKinlay, Chief Executive of the Centre for Governance and Scrutiny said

“Tackling gambling harm is a growing priority in many areas but will be competing with many other issues for scrutiny attention. We are delighted to be supported by the Gambling Commission and other partners to the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms to carry out this research and provide practical support. It is an excellent opportunity to identify and promote existing examples of good scrutiny practice, share learning and develop new approaches.”

Tim Miller, Executive Director at the Gambling Commission said:

“Local authorities, through their licensing roles, are an essential part of the system of gambling regulation alongside us as the national regulator. Local government scrutiny has a vital role to play in supporting and providing oversight of local activity to tackle gambling harms across a range of partners. We know the harms associated with gambling can have significant impact on health and wellbeing, relationships, families, and society overall. Local action will be most successful when it is collaborative and evidence-led, and we welcome this project by CfGS which will highlight examples of best practice.”.

To share your council’s experience of using its scrutiny committee to tackle problems created by gambling, please email

The guidance will be launched in the summer of 2020. 


Note to editors:

  • The National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms identifies local regulation and local public health as playing a key role in reducing gambling harms.
  • The Commission reserves the power to approve the destinations of payments in lieu of financial penalties, which are agreed as part of a regulatory settlement in line with the Commission’s Statement of Principles for Determining Financial Penalties.

Media enquiries:

Jenny Manchester, CfGS Events and Project Support Manager 07913779049/