Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Fri 5 Mar 2021



The Northern Territory news Fri 5 Mar 2021

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT






Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.

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News Corp Australia

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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News Corp Australia



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04 NEWS FRIDAY MARCH 5 2021 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 Up to $60k bet on a card game The Territory has seen a serious increase in gambling. Picture: iStock POLICE say up to $60,000 is being wagered on a single game of cards in remote communities amid a surge in gambling linked to COVID-19 stimulus payments. Documents obtained under Freedom of Information show concerns were raised with federal Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt about an increase in gambling following the increased Centrelink payments and early access to superannuation. Minister for Territory Families Kate Worden confirmed the Territory had seen an increase in gambling since the payments began. Things like the Territory CheckIn App can show us where people actually are and I believe places like the casino have had the highest rate of people checking in, she said. An NT News investigation has revealed the extra money provided to help people through the pandemic has seen a surge in alcohol and drug consumption, as well as gambling. This is what happens and theres plenty of evidence that when additional money flows into a community that is traditionally living with poverty, this is an unintended consequence, Ms Worden said. It is an outcome of poverty, people are always looking for I might win that extra bit of money and it actually is like alcoholism, its a disease. Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker said there had also been an increase in card games in remote communities and around urban areas. From reports from people we know in communities, upwards of $50,000 to 60,000 in cash being on the blankets in the gambling dens, he said. Michael Liddle, who runs the Codes 4 Life program for Aboriginal men, said there had been a sharp increase in card games being played around Alice Springs in recent months. Card games are everywhere in Alice Springs, packs of 30 to 40 people and theyre all playing cards, he said. Mindil Beach Casino Resort general manager Avril Baynes said the business had taken major steps to look after customers through its Play It Safe initiative and the armband system, which was introduced to track every person who visited Mindil Beach Casino Resort. This is one of the reasons why we have such a high rate on the government check-in app, Ms Baynes said. MATT CUNNINGHAM Surge in NT gambling linked to COVID-19 stimulus payments SATURDAY 13 MARCH 2021

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