Citing the addictive and potentially destructive nature of gambling, Cardinal Thomas Collins has expressed “real concerns” about an Ontario government proposal to open more casinos and slot machines and to take its lottery business online.

“We need to be very, very careful about expanding gambling, because it can cause great social problems,” Collins said. “We already have many stresses upon families, and gambling can add to that. Gambling can deprive families of the money they need to survive, but it also can deprive families of the presence of a member, perhaps a parent.”

Published in Canada: Toronto-GTA

An indisputable fact about casinos is that they hurt people. Not all people, of course, and perhaps not even the majority of people. But as sure as a roulette wheel spins, the casino business causes personal harm to land on some gamblers.

An important duty of government is to protect its citizens. We spend billions of dollars on such safety nets as policing, social programs and health care because society accepts a collective responsibility to look out for one another and then entrusts government to implement policies to make that happen. So it stands to reason that governments should not be supporting any type of high-stakes gambling business that can harm citizens.

Published in Editorial