Single staffing in betting shops in ireland
customers to bet on the outcome of the Irish Lottery. are filled by women, making betting shops one of the most female-friendly industries in the. Another 51 shops, including some in the North, are unaffected by the closures. Full support will be given to the staff affected and alternative employment will. Turnover increased by % the next year, with over 13, licenses for betting shops in operation. Bingo is also legitimized. UDINESE V ATALANTA BETTING TIPS
This was followed by the Falls ward which hosted 8 shops. This was closely followed by Foyle with The constituency with the least betting shops was North Down with 9. It is consistent with parallel findings from elsewhere in the UK and also with similar findings about the concentration of gambling machines in clubs and hotels in poorer areas in Australia. They may not explicitly target poorer communities but they surely carry out market research which tells them in which social-demographic categories their most profitable customers are likely to be found.
Since place and socio-demographics are correlated, that is tantamount to targeting areas. It is a matter of real concern to us that gambling shops are appearing to cluster around some of the most deprived areas in Northern Ireland. The big operators seem to be targeting poorer people in order to extract as much profit as possible from the communities that will feel it the most. Not all of the licenses are currently being used. Our research has found that there are betting shops operating in Northern Ireland.
This figure was found by cross-checking the address provided for the betting licence with the current use of the premises. However, it is possible that the number could have changed since the data was provided by the Department of Social Development on 7 March It is simply too dangerous for staff. One employee at a betting office, who has experienced an armed robbery told TheJournal.
In a general sense, he said single-manning causes problems throughout the day as workers are afraid to take toilet breaks in case agitated punters miss a chance to place a bet in the few minutes they are away. They also face criticism from managers about the level of cleanliness of the shop floors, despite the fact that they can not leave the counter for security reasons when they are the only worker there. At his store, employees from other branches are often drafted in for an hour just so he can take a lunch break.
Pressure Paddy Power said that like many other retailers, in some circumstances they make use of single staffing in selected locations.
Sadly, no Government action was taken and in May last year Ladbrokes betting shop manager Andrew Iacovou was murdered while lone-staffing a shop that had repeatedly been classified as high risk. There would have been someone to save him. It should never have been allowed and incredibly it is still going on. Far too often a staff member is left on their own late at night dealing with aggressive behaviour, robberies and criminal damage, much of which goes unreported.
It is time for action to end the dangerous practice of lone staffing in betting shops. The betting industry has taken steps to enhance staff safety in recent years. In , the betting industry formed the Safe Bet Alliance, mentioned by my hon.
Friend the Member for Shipley, to tackle instances of crime against staff, customers and betting operators. Those standards were developed in collaboration with the industry, police and local authorities. Although the Safe Bet Alliance was launched in London, all those standards have been adopted by the largest betting operators, which means that the vast majority of betting premises in England, Scotland and Wales are covered by those principles.
Every employer must consider workplace risks to their employees. I expect all bookmakers to properly assess the appropriateness of single staffing as part of their business operations. The hon. Member for Islwyn mentioned support for a national charter. The industry is implementing its social responsibility code, which includes points on staff safety, from March. The principles of any charter could perhaps be adopted in the existing code.
There is certainly room for further discussions on that. We have heard that single staffing limits the ability of staff to intervene when customers experience problems. It is essential that all gambling operators, not just betting shops, are able to provide support to customers who appear to be having difficulty. Those policies must include training for all staff on their respective responsibilities and how and when any customer intervention should occur.
Those procedures must be adhered to as a minimum requirement by gambling operators. The Gambling Commission can take action, up to and including licence revocation, if there is evidence that a betting shop is failing or falling short of its obligations. In conclusion, the safety of betting shop employees and customers is of paramount importance. Local authorities already have powers to impose licence conditions on betting shops to ensure that this is the case.
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The work force is mainly made up of women, some of whom are re-entering the workplace after having children, or students, who need flexible or part-time work while studying, as I did when I was a student. From to , the number of betting shop staff fell from 60, to 54, We expect staff to enforce consumer protection measures and to verify the age of gamblers.
At the same time, they have to police fixed odds betting terminals. Speak to somebody who works in a betting shop today and they will tell you how difficult it is for staff to oversee fixed odds betting terminals usage if they are on their own. If you go into a betting shop at lunchtime certainly in Ireland you can smell the chips! I mean in the 50's we said it was Grim up north!! Any debate on betting will focus on problem gambling while the issues that betting shop staff faces on a day to day basis are forgotten.
Be under no illusion — working in a betting shop is stressful. Not only are members of staff expected to enforce consumer protection measures and verify the age of gamblers. They are also asked to police Fixed Odds Betting Terminals and report incidences of anti-social behaviour.
In addition, they have to get on with the job they are employed to do. When someone works alone in a shop they are expected to do all that as well as take and settle bets. Ultimately employees are being asked to work as both cashier and manager at the same time. Very often they do not get paid any extra for working what are in effect two jobs.
That is why I have called for a debate to look into the issues surrounding lone working to establish what steps the industry and ministers can take to tackle the problems staff face. Following the debate is my hope that we will see a commitment on the part of the betting industry to ensure that workers feel safe and secure whilst working in betting shops.