8,000 sign up in Latvia to try to beat gambling habit

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More than 8,000 people have signed up to break their problems with gambling, according to a release from the government agency overseeing the innovative scheme.

Since it launched on January 1, the "Self-denied persons register" has received 8,233 applications from people wanting to break the gambling habit. The voluntary scheme blocks access to gaming halls and casinos both in the real world and online, helping people with compulsive or addictive behavior to avoid repeating earlier mistakes.
In June alone, the register received more than 1,100 applications. 

"In a 2019 study published by the Ministry of Health, it was found that around 16,000 people in Latvia are at risk of gambling addiction. So far the number of applications received shows that people are actively using the opportunity to deny themselves access to gambling. With this registration rate continuing, we can predict that by the end of this year, most of the people most at risk of gambling addicition may have already registered themselves," said Signe Birne, Head of the Lotteries and Gambling Supervision Inspectorate, which runs the scheme.     
Participants can register quickly and easily online at the official state portal with their name and personal identity code for a minimum of 12 months, as shown in the video above.
Similar schemes have been running in neighboring Estonia and Lithuania for two years, and around 13,000 people have signed up in each country.
Voluntary gambling register
Voluntary gambling register
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