GAMBLING firms have agreed to stop all TV and radio advertising for games and products during the virus lockdown.
The Betting and Gaming Council said firms have voluntarily agreed to remove all advertising for at least six weeks.
The move comes amid criticism that the industry is exploiting people who are stuck at home. TV and radio advertising slots will be replaced by safer gambling messages, donated to charities or removed from broadcast where contracts allow.
“We are determined to do everything we can to protect customers potentially at risk during this lockdown period and beyond.”
“I hope now that other major gambling operators like the National Lottery follow our lead,” Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) chief executive Michael Dugher said.
BGC, which represents betting shops, online betting and gaming, bingo and casinos, said the move would result in the removal of half of all product advertising on TV and radio.
It added that all operators will “look to implement this change as rapidly as possible but no later than Thursday May 7”.
Concern about gambling during the lockdown has increased. Earlier this month a cross-party group of more than 20 MPs signed a letter calling for curbs, including a moratorium on advertising.
The move came after a separate announcement that baliff visits would be banned until the lockdown was over.
The Taking Control of Goods and Certification of Enforcement Agents (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020 were laid in Parliament late on Friday and came into effect immediately