The Latvian parliament has rejected amendments to the Gambling and Lotteries Law that would limit gambling in the country.
Saeima deputy Juris Jurašs urged other members of the parliament to support this legislative draft. He commented that about 80,000 people in Latvia struggle from gambling addiction, with 15,000 categorized as ‘severe’ problem gamblers.
He said that this amendment would become a ‘good step towards forming a healthier society.
“In Latvia, gambling halls are a long-term disease that makes certain people wealthy, and it must be treated,” he said.
During the voting process, 35 Saeima deputies voted to pass the proposal to the Budget and Finance Committee. 15 voted against, and 27 deputies abstained. And so, the parliament rejected the draft.
According to the 2016 study, 26% of those who gambled previously admitted to having times when gambling consumed so much of their lives that the outside world ceased to exist for them.
The legislative draft also proposed that casinos would only operate in four or five-star hotels in Latvia.
Deputies also proposed making it illegal for alimony avoiders to gamble. The Maintenance Guarantee Fund Law already imposes multiple restrictions for debtors to motivate them to fulfill their obligations.
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