The self-exclusion program: Legal and clinical considerations


In recent years, attention focused on compulsive gambling, and its causes and cures, has increased at a notable rate. Among the measures taken to help the compulsive gambler is the voluntary self-exclusion program which is either in place or being considered in various states. Although the programs differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, the basic premise is that the gambler requests that he be banned from the gaming establishment and/or removed from its mailing list. This article examines this new concept primarily from a legal perspective. The self-exclusion program represents a state-created legal entity constructed upon a clinical foundation. It prominently includes several clinical references to mental health principles. Of necessity, there appear some analogies to the field of substance abuse; these have provided at least a starting point for more particularized study and research in the fledgling field of compulsive gambling treatment.

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