Tauranga City Council reviews gambling venues policy

By Mere McLean
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

There will be no new gambling venues in Tauranga if a new policy is passed.

The council is reviewing their gambling venues policy,  a move which is gaining support from community groups in Tauranga.

Greerton, a suburb of Tauranga has twelve venues which provide access to either gaming machines or alcohol.

"80 percent of the whānau that we support have an addiction” says social worker Piki Russell of Te Tuinga Whānau Trust.

The Trust, which is based in Greerton, is welcoming the policy review by the council.  They work with whānau in helping them to change their lives.

Trust representative Tommy Wilson says, “We don't need any more misery money in this community, especially where it is the low income and the old that are exposed the most." 

Proposed changes include a ban on new venues in the city and new machines for current license-holders.

Russell says these changes will go a long way in helping many of her clients.

“They don't need to be reminded that they have this addiction, they just need someone to know and to care for them.” 

Public consultation on the daft gambling venues policy closes on Friday 16 November.