Angela Leong pushes for croupier ban

Executive director of SJM Holdings Angela Leong On Kei has urged the government to legislate the ban of gaming workers from casinos in their off-duty hours, local media reports.

According to a report from Macau Business, Leong said in a written commentary that she was concerned about the lack of timetable from the government in implementing the ban.

She noted that problem gambling amongst gaming workers was a serious problem, making up for at least one third of problem gamblers according to 2013 data.

A total of 147 people registered with the ‘Central Registry System of Individuals with Gambling Disorder in 2015, according to the Social Welfare Bureau of Macau.

Of the individuals who registered to have a gambling disorder, it was revealed that 20 percent of them were currently employed as a dealer / croupier, according to its 2015 annual report.

On Tuesday, Paulo Martins Chan, director of the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) agreed the banning of dealers from gambling outlets is appropriate for the industry.

Chan reportedly made the comment during the Responsible Gambling Promotions Kick Off Ceremony at the University of Macau (UM).

“Some statistics clarify that [the likelihood of] dealers being addicted to gambling is relatively high, and so this is a very important measure to be implemented,” said Chan. After seeing customers winning money, dealers easily develop the idea that winning is easy, or consider themselves to have a certain leverage.”

However, Chan said the details have yet to be discussed.

“We will know what to do at the right time,” he said, adding that his department needs to “collect ideas from the public and have a wide discussion about the issue.”