Press Release – Department Of Internal Affairs
26 June 2019
Encouraging Best Practice in Gambling
In a first of its kind, the Department of Internal Affairs has granted Hamilton-based Grassroots Trust [Grassroots] a three-year Class 4 Gambling licence.Grassroots demonstrated best practice through their strong policies and practice and commitment to harm minimisation.
“As gambling regulator, we are responsible for ensuring that we have a safe, trusted and transparent gambling sector that ensures gambling is fair, well-run, and that gambling operators are demonstrating a culture of care and minimising harm to their patrons,” says Lisa Docherty, Director Gambling Regulatory System.
“We developed the three-year licence to identify and reward gambling operators, both club and non-club societies, who go beyond the legal minimum to achieve effective and efficient ways of minimising the harm associated with gambling, while also maximising the benefits to the community.
“We know that there are some venues and societies that have room to improve their standards and we are putting a strong emphasis on lifting these, but at the same time – we know that there are societies working very hard to provide the best service to the community they can.
“Grassroots has certainly demonstrated this in their strong performance and best practice processes required to earn New Zealand’s first three-year licence,” says Lisa.
Martin Bradley, Chairman of Grassroots says “We are more than excited to be the first operator in the country to receive DIA’s gambling regulator’s stamp of approval. We know the importance of keeping New Zealand’s public safe from gambling harm – it’s something we demonstrate well through our practices,” says Martin.
New Zealand has a unique approach to regulating gambling. Gambling profits must benefit the community and because of this, every year nearly three quarters of a billion dollars is returned to the community through grants and other funds generated by the four main forms of gambling.
Grassroots is the fourth largest gaming trust in New Zealand and distributes nearly $16 million a year back in community funding from gaming machines. The Trust operates 57 gaming venues in Auckland, Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Hawke’s Bay and Wellington; and returns over 40% of profits from gaming machines to local communities and schools for sport, education and community activities.
Since 2003, they have contributed more than $60 million to community organisations and major projects.
Is gambling a problem for you or someone you know?
The Gambling Helpline offers free and confidential information and support over the phone: 0800 654 655 or text 8006.
Case-Study: Grassroots Trust Funds
Allandale School, Whakātane – Te Puna Taiao Kaupapa Project
Allandale School’s dream of turning their School into an interactive and natural space that allows children opportunities for creative play, risk-taking and to forge greater connections with others and their natural world is now a reality; thanks to funding from Grassroots Trust.
Allandale School is the first school in Aotearoa to implement Te Puna Taiao kaupapa, an initiative informed by both Science and mātauranga Māori to transform better use of outdoor school grounds to create innovative learning environments for all students. The Grassroots Trust provided $124,000 from community grants to help this project – which is nearing its completion.
Allandale School is a decile 2 primary school of around 400 students in the very low socio-economic community of Kopeopeo, Whakatāne. With approximately three quarters of their community identifying themselves as Māori, the outdoor learning environment was designed to reflect not only the School’s beautiful area, but to also embed the concepts from Te Ao Māori (the Māori World).
Project Lead, Erin Green says “We are really grateful for the support of the amazing team at Grassroots Trust. With their generous help we have been able to build an innovative whānau-friendly, outdoor play and recreation facility at Allandale School that connects our community to Te Ao Māori and the natural world. Thank you Grassroots!”
The new multi-use outdoor facility provides an amazing play and teaching resource for the school, as well as a whanau-friendly multi-use facility for the Kopeopeo community outside of school hours. Having been designed by the children, teachers and wider community, the new facility provides children with the right opportunities to flourish, both as individuals, and as members of whānau, communities and Te Ao (the World).