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Problem Gambling Awareness Month Set To Begin In New Jersey

New Jersey lawmakers have been busy at work trying to expand their gambling industry over the past couple of years. Despite the push for expansion, legislators have remained cognizant of the fact that there needs to be increased awareness and treatment options for New Jersey residents.

With that in mind, Governor Chris Christie has announced that March is Problem Gambling Awareness month in the state. Lawmakers, counselors, and business professionals will use the month to try and bring an increased awareness to the dangers that could come from excessive gambling.

"We take our responsibility very seriously when it comes to addressing compulsive gambling through the Self-Exclusion Program," said Director of Gaming Enforcement David Rebuck. "We encourage anyone who has a problem controlling their betting habits to reach out for help and information on the self-exclusion program and treatment programs available in New Jersey."

Self-exclusion programs have become a popular tool for gamblers that cannot control their habits. A gambler has the option to register in many states and be placed on a self-exclusion list. That list goes out to all of the casinos, and a person found at the casino after enrolling in the program is kicked out of the facility. In some states, the gambler can even be charged with trespassing if they have put themselves on a self-exclusion list and are found in a casino.

Maryland has been the leader in problem gambling awareness over the past couple of years. Maryland only recently added casinos, and their awareness and treatment programs are considered to be among the most aggressive in the country. The Northeast has become a haven for casino gambling, with Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, New York, and Connecticut all expanding their gaming industries within the past five years.

In New Jersey, seminars have been set for the month of March, where awareness will be the central topic. Doctors, therapists, casino executives, and members of the Gaming Board will all give presentations about the dangers associated with gambling.

"Like other forms of addiction, compulsive gambling can destroy lives, undermine families, and even lead to criminal behavior," said New jersey Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa. "It is important that we take this month to increase awareness of this problem and encourage compulsive gamblers to seek help."

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