NSW to restrict pokies

New South Wales has become the latest Australian state to propose restrictions to the number of pokies in pubs and clubs.

According to new laws proposed by the state government, communities seen as vulnerable to problem gambling will not be allowed any more machines, local media reports.

Under the gambling reform legislation, which was introduced to state parliament on Tuesday, 20 percent of the state would be unable to have additional poker machines.

High-risk communities will be decided based on their socio-economic level as determined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Requests for additional machines before the legislation was introduced will be exempt from the new guidelines.

According to local media, much of western Sydney including Fairfield, Liverpool, Cabramatta, Horsley Park and Bankstown will be capped as well as parts of the Hunter region, mid north coast and country towns in western NSW.

Fairfield in Sydney’s west is one of the biggest poker machine hotspots, with more than 3300 machines in clubs in the area.

Australia’s ubiquitous pokies are coming under attack in a number of states across the countries, with political parties in Tasmania proposing a ban in pubs and clubs and severe restrictions put forward by opposition candidates in elections in South Australia.