The Colorado Division of Gaming has launched a self-exclusion program three years after the state launched retail and online sports betting. Up until the launch, the Problem Gambling Coalition of Colorado (PGCC) ran the state’s self-exclusion program.
Colorado Division of Gaming Director Christopher Schroder said in a CDOR news release:
“The Division of Gaming is committed to promoting responsible gaming in the Colorado gaming industry, and the launch of the state’s Self-Exclusion program is an exciting advancement for our state. We appreciate all of the work that the PGCC has done to get the Self-Exclusion program to this point. They are an excellent partner in this important work.”
Colorado gambling laws require self-exclusion programs
Like many states, self-exclusion programs are part of gambling rules and regulations. For example, gambling regulations in Colorado require retail sports betting operators to provide and maintain self-exclusion programs.
If someone signs up for self-exclusion, they become a “prohibited participant” and the sportsbook must make “all reasonable efforts” to bar that person from betting, including sending marketing materials to the self-excluded individual.
Additionally, retail sportsbooks cannot send direct marketing promos, provide loyal accounts, cash checks for, or offer comps to self-excluded gamblers.
In essence, sportsbooks are required to completely cut off self-excluded individuals. The state’s casinos must play by the same rules.
Individuals can exclude themselves for one, three, or five years. Once the self-exclusion period is over, individuals must get approval from the Division of Gaming to leave the list.
And, while not recommended, individuals can petition the Division of Gaming director to remove them from the self-exclusion list before their exclusion period ends.
Self-exclusion programs can be helpful in combination with other aid
A 2023 article published in the International Journal of Environment Research and Public Health reviewed several self-exclusion studies and found the programs can be helpful to problem gamblers when paired with a holistic approach to responsible gambling.
However, the review was limited to just a handful of studies in Australia and China. Researchers believed the evidence gained was enough to breed optimism about self-exclusion programs.
As documented by the National Institute of Health in the Qualitative Experience of Self-Exclusion Programs: A Scoping Review, researchers wrote:
“Although there are many barriers and limitations to the current self-exclusion programs included in this review, self-exclusion is generally viewed as an effective responsible gambling strategy.
The integration of effective self-exclusion programs within a holistic management approach, in combination with counseling and other additional aid, will most likely have the most beneficial impact on the quality of life of problem gamblers, their families, their friends, their communities, and their societies.”
AGA study shows responsible gambling efforts have a positive impact
While studies about self-exclusion programs may be limited, the overall evidence about responsible gambling programs indicates they are effective.
A recent study from the American Gaming Association revealed that the average gambler believes responsible gambling measures like deposit limits, time limits, and wager limits are effective.
The study also showed that 84% of gamblers know at least one responsible gambling resource and 91% of sports bettors.