Problem Gambling Resource Center Staff See Increase in Calls

ROCHESTER, NY – Placing a bet on sporting events is easy.

Legalized mobile sports betting went statewide on Saturday morning, giving the green light to apps like FanDuel and DraftKings.

But with the game now more accessible, some fear it could cause problems for many New Yorkers.

“It’s within reach,” said Jenna Hotaling of the Finger Lakes Problem Gambling Resource Center. “These days everyone is on their phones. It just makes it a lot easier to pick up your phone and place a bet. “

Staff at the Finger Lakes Problem Gambling Resource Center say they are already seeing an increase in calls related to sports gambling. They say having access to apps is appealing to people, especially younger ones.

“It’s something that if you increase uptime and accessibility, you’re bound to increase the problems,” Hotaling said.

But staff prepared for these heightened problems ahead of the rollout of mobile sports betting.

If you think you have a problem, they say the first step is to just reach out.

“You will not be transferred or cold called,” Hotaling explained. “You have someone on the other end of the phone who wants to help you and guide you every step of the way. “

At the end of the day, staff members just want people with addictions to know it’s okay to ask for help.

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