A proposed pan-European markers of harm standard has been submitted by the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) to the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN). The continental trade body argues that a reliable list of standardized harm markers is ‘essential’ for cross-border gambling harm prevention and to bolster online safety via the early identification of problem gamblers.
Maarten Haijer, EGBA Secretary General, stated: "We urge national standardisation bodies, gambling authorities, and other stakeholders to support this common-sense proposal to jointly develop a standard on markers of harm in Europe."
"A standard would be an essential element to help prevent risky and problem gambling behavior and support consumer protection. The process to develop the standard would bring together the knowledge and expertise of academics, researchers, harm prevention experts, and other stakeholders to work collaboratively towards the common purpose of preventing gambling-related harm," he added.
CEN, the body responsible for developing standards in Europe, is currently conducting a ballot of its members, the national standardization bodies (NSBs) of European countries, to determine whether the proposal should be approved.
NSBs have until the end of December 2022 to vote. If the proposal is adopted, relevant stakeholders, including academics, health experts, authorities, operators, and consumer organizations, will be able to participate in the discussions to develop the standard.
Alongside the proposal, a group of academics also signed a joint letter of support for the markers of harm standard, which indicated that its development would “encourage research collaboration” to enhance the understanding of problem gambling and support harm prevention in Europe.