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Ygam integrates new content which focuses on LGBTQ+ communities

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London, 28 June 2023: Ygam is increasing its focus on helping to safeguard individuals from the LBGTQ+ community as a new report revealed this group is particularly at risk of experiencing harms related to gambling.

Ygam, an award-winning education charity, has integrated new content into its evidence-based harm prevention workshops which specifically focus on the relationship between gambling harms and the LGBTQ+ community. The first session was successfully delivered during Pride Month.

The initiative is in response to new research by academics at Bournemouth University. It found that 53% of LGBTQ+ individuals reported to having three or more gambling accounts that they use regularly, and nearly half (49%) stated that they felt regret after gambling.

The study also revealed that 77% of LGBTQ+ individuals would seek help if they felt they had a problem. Many of the mental health problems associated with gambling harms are also more prevalent among LGBTQ+ populations.

Discrimination and harassment based on gender identity and non-conformity are experienced by 71% of LGBTQ+ people in the research, and the reports suggests that gambling might provide a coping strategy for some. However, many LGBTQ+ people say that they do not feel safe or welcome in land-based gambling venues, with online gambling viewed as more accessible and inclusive for them.

The report also identifies a need for more tailored support for vulnerable groups. There is a perception amongst the participants that current support service providers do not cater for the unique needs of LBGTQ+ community.

Ygam will now be working with Dr Reece Bush-Evans from the Gambling Research Group at Bournemouth University to further develop our portfolio of educational programmes to ensure they are informed by the latest insights published in this new research.

Kyle Riding, Head of Programmes at Ygam, said: “The findings of this new research are concerning, and we hope our resources will help safeguard young people within the LGBTQ+ community. Anyone can experience gambling harms, but stressors unique to the LGBTQ+ community are not experienced by everyone. Our training equips delegates with the knowledge, understanding and confidence to lead safeguarding conversations, identify signs of harms and signpost to the support available. We believe that all young people should be protected against gambling harms, and we should take action when we identify specifically vulnerable groups.”

Dr Reece Bush-Evans from the Gambling Research Group at Bournemouth University said: “Fundamental to this work has been the engagement with LGBTQ+ people with lived experience of gambling harms. Many LGBTQ+ people we have interviewed say that they have experienced losing control over their gambling at some point in their life. Prevention is important, which is why it is crucial to raise awareness and deliver education to our younger generations. I’m looking forward to working with Ygam and using this new research to further inform their work. More needs to be done to protect the wellbeing of marginalised groups such as the LGBTQ+ community and education is paramount to this.”

The workshops delivered by Ygam are free to delegates who have safeguarding or caring responsibilities over young people including teachers, youth workers, parents, and health professionals. Ygam will also be adding training sessions related to the LGBTQ+ community into their Alumni programme which was launched earlier this year. This training equips delegates with the knowledge, understanding, confidence and skills to lead safeguarding conversations, identify signs of harms and signpost to the support available.

For more information about Ygam and our portfolio of education programmes, please email training@ygam.org.

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