Casino gambling in Albania, economic growth, social costs and its relationship to crime.
Casino gambling in Albania. Economic growth, social costs and its relationship to crime. Dr.proc. Menada Petro University “A. Moisiu” Durrës, Albania
Mirdite Durres TiranaThe theme of my study is "Psychosocial Effectsof gambling in Albania and the need forservices."The study is focused on three areas of Albania, Tirana Durres Mirdite
The main questions the study addresses are: Age at which gambling start & cohort effects Kind of games & type of playersMethods used are:- Questionnaires- Interviews- Official information- Case studies- Study of literature
The focus of this presentation is the economiceffects of casino gambling, the social costs thatmay accompany legalized casino gambling andthe relationship with crime.
There is no question that:1.Legalized gambling has brought economic benefits to some communities,2.Problem gambling has imposed economic and social costs.The important question is: Which is larger and by how much?To address this and related policy issues, individual,social and economic costs of pathological gambling needto be considered in the context of the overall impactthat gambling has on society.
According to official information there are: 1500 centers of sports betting in Albania, whilethe number of companies decreased from 15 to 8.This happens not because of reduced demand, but to reduce the tax thatbusiness have to pay. 190 electronic casinos in whole Albania.9 national bingo`s companies and 2 televisionbingos.If we refer to the unofficial sources we can findout that the gambling game number is doubled.
According to the surveillance unit, in 2011 werecollected 1 billion and 5 million euro more than in2010.As provided by companies of bet, there are about3 million tickets that just cut in a match on theweekend and the average amount is 10 euroa ticket.According to official information this industryhas had the profit peak between 1999-2000, butthen the owners of these companies were foreignpeople.Meanwhile, today this business is mainly in thehands of Albanian people. We all accept the fact that gambling is a lucrative business, but to interfere in it is very difficult, almost impossible.
Direct and indirect effectsThe direct effect represents a net addition to the community`sresources.The direct effect of a casino is the income and employment (thewages of employees)Indirect effects refer to the secondary effects that casinos have onthe community.Indirect effects are the expense of casino employees to otherbusinesses (grocery stores, clothing stores, etc)Both these, direct & indirect effects are consider benefits.
Direct & indirect effects are tangible because theyresult in measurably more jobs and additional incomebeing generated in the local economy.Intangible benefits and costs are identifiable effects thatare difficult or impossible to measure or to quantify ineuro terms (psychosocial cost & benefit, mood,motivation, emotions, loss of control, concerns, effects orproblems on children and family, etc). Intangible benefits and costs are usually omitted from consideration in gambling related economic analysis studies - a clear shortcoming.
Another cost to the gambler is loss of employment. 1 in8 of gamblers reports the loss of his job. 60% of 500respondents report that they spend an average of 12hours of work per month.Bankruptcy presents another adverse consequence ofexcessive gambling. 20% of 500 respondents reporttheir business bankruptcy due to gambling.The research suggests that the magnitude and extent ofpersonal consequences on gamblers and their familiesmay be severe.
SOCIAL COSTS Alleged social costs: » Income lost from missed work » Decreased productivity on the jobDepression and physical illness related to stressIncreased suicide attemptsIncreased number of theftsIncreased number of murdersBailout costsUnrecovered loans to pathological gamblersUnpaid debts and bankruptciesHigher insurance premiums resulting frompathological gambler-caused fraud:
Corruption of public officialsStrain on public servicesIndustry cannibalizationDivorces caused by gamblingThese are related also to those with whom the gambler hasmost frequent interactions, including family, friends and closeassociates. Many families of gamblers suffer from a variety offinancial, physical and emotional problems. There is no study in Albania about these, but if we refer to the literature we find that:
Most of the Spouses Children of gamblers had serious emotional are physically and verballyproblems abused had resorted to drinking, are more likely to smoke,smoking, overeating and drink and use drugsimpulse spending suffered from chronic or are more likely to describesevere headaches, stomach their childhood as unhappyproblem of anger, express feelings of anger,depression and isolation sadness and depression are physically andverbally abused Gamblers distance are more likely to be themselves from family andseparated or divorced friends.
Financial Problems and CrimeFinancial losses pose the most immediate and compellingcost to the gambler in the throes of his disorder. Asaccess to money becomes more limited, gamblers oftenresort to crime in order to pay debts, appease bookies,maintain appearances and garner more money togamble.Criminal behaviors among adolescent gamblers aremore prevalent than among adult gamblers, in partbecause youths have few options for obtaining funds andgreater susceptibility to social pressure among gamblingpeers.
• Time after time, attraction to gambling has prompted men and boys to suicide.• Loss of large amounts of money at various casinos, is leading to increasing number of widows and children with one parent.• As a result of gambling, during2008-2012, there are: 7 suicide 9 murders 7 bank robberies 120 burglary dwellings
The casino industry maintains that its product is simply a form of entertainment like going to movies and football games, and consumers are willing to pay a price for entertainment.But many researchers arguethat gambling isfundamentally different fromother forms of entertainmenteither because gambling,unlike movies and footballgames, can lead to addiction,or to the crime.
These are some of the findings of the study During this work I have encountered some difficulties and some of them can be considered as recommendations for other studies.These difficulties are:- Lack of literature on gambling in Albania- Lack of social and economic studies- Lack of official data on the number of gamblingbusinesses, costs, benefits, betting- Lack of regular data on the crime numbers
RECOMANDATIONS• Creation and operation of assistance and advice lines•Interference from voluntary therapies to compulsory counseling and rehabilitation• Granting of license for the casinos opening in suburban areas and as far as city centers• Higher taxes, setting different rules and control their implementation• Setting higher penalties for non compliance with these rules
This study has not been completed yetWhat was presented here is only a part of the workperformed.I am still working on it and I have more work to do inorder to achieve a complete scientific study. Thank you for your attention! firstname.lastname@example.org