The NZ Gambling Commission is reviewing New Zealand casinos’ charity requirements. According to reports, some casinos donate less than 1% of their profits to charity. Whereas pub and club pokie operators should donate approximately 40% of their profits.
As part of their license agreement with the regulator, each of New Zealand’s six casinos is required to contribute to charity. The concept was implemented in 2019, when Christchurch Casino received a 15-year license extension with the requirement to donate nearly 3% of net profits or NZ$250,000 ($179,345), whichever is greater, to its charitable trust.
Despite the low percentages, the casinos appear to be meeting the overall charitable requirement. Some are even getting ready to submit submissions for review.
Dunedin Casino gave $52,000 to problem gambling treatment and 1% of gaming machine profits to the community. SkyCity donated less than 1% of its profits to charity, but it totaled NZ$500,000.
“Why is this the top priority when harm minimization and ensuring casinos deliver effective host responsibility programs should be?” The Problem Gambling Foundation’s spokeswoman, Andree Froude, said
“No amount of charity can compensate for the harm caused by gambling. We must concentrate on where the money comes from, which is frequently the most vulnerable in our society, rather than where it goes.”