Pokie laws in Queensland: Wanna bet?

QUEENSLAND remains strongly opposed to controversial mandatory pre-commitment pokie machine laws, opting instead for pro-choice and revamped posters and pamphlets.

The new problem gambling awareness campaign, launched in Brisbane on Tuesday morning, plays on the joke Australians would bet on anything, including two flies crawling up a wall, and will replace the Wanna Bet? campaign.

"We need to re-energise and re-brand the issue of problem gambling in Queensland. People get a stagnate view of the world if we continue the Wanna Bet? campaign," Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said.

"There is statistical evidence to show the Wanna Bet? campaign actually worked; the problem is the research then started to show it was on the downhill as I think people got too used to the message."

Mr Bleijie has been a vocal opponent of Independent MP Andrew Wilkie's mandatory pre-commitment pokie technology, which will go on trial in the ACT next year.

If the Federal Government moved in to force the changes on Queensland clubs, Mr Bleijie said he would consider joining forces with other states to challenge the Commonwealth in the High Court.

"I don't believe the science is there, I don't believe the research is there and I don't believe it will work," he said.

"I don't believe, fundamentally, that every person in society should suffer government regulation and red tape because of a minority.

"It would kill a lot of community clubs.

"What we support is people having a choice."

Justin O'Connor, from the Queensland Hotels Association, said problem gamblers accounted for only 0.37% of the adult population in Queensland.

The new campaign, including posters, pamphlets and digital screen images, will be rolled out across every establishment with pokie machines in Queensland.


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