Parents who leave their children unattended while they’re at the pokies have been targeted in the State Government’s latest crackdown on gaming venues, Minister for Business Services and Consumers Gail Gago announced today.
The crackdown followed reports by some venues of children being left alone.
“This is about ensuring the safety of South Australian children in and around gaming venues.
“On Wednesday, Consumer and Business Services inspected about 40 licensed gaming venues in the metropolitan region – including car parks and adjacent areas – for children left unattended by parents playing gaming machines.
“I am glad to inform that this operation detected no unattended children. However, several venues reported previous issues where minors had been left alone while their parents were at the pokies,” Ms Gago said.
In those instances, venue operators most commonly ejected the parents from the venues to return to their children. In some cases, venues referred the family to support services, notified police or pursued barring orders.
“Gaming venues have a responsibility for the safety of children on the premises and it is crucial that there are procedures in place should a child be detected alone in or around that venue.
“During the CBS operation, the on-duty manager at each licensed venue was asked about their policies and procedures regarding the issue of unattended young children.
“Inspectors from Consumer and Business Services worked with these managers on best practices to identify and address issues of children left alone.
“These include regular checks of the venue and car park; and how to approach parents when an unattended child is detected.
“Our community should feel confident that the State Government and gaming industry are ensuring responsible attitudes toward the use of gaming machines,” Ms Gago said.