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The Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to problem gambling prevention.

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Research & Analysis

The following Responsible Gambling Council research and analysis is available for download. When sharing or quoting information contained in these reports, please cite the report, its authors, and its publication date. Please contact us if you have any questions about the appropriate use of this material.

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Teen Gambling in Ontario: Behaviours and Perceptions Among 15 to 17 Year Olds

Responsible Gambling Council | Jan 24, 2007

To inform its prevention initiatives, RGC conducted an electronic survey of Ontario youth 15 to 17 years of age. The purpose of the survey, which was completed by 2,140 participants, was to get a sense of youth gambling behaviours and perceptions. There was a particular focus on poker—both live (i.e., in person) and online (i.e., over the Internet), as these are growth areas for youth gambling.

The survey’s results are divided into four main sections:

  1. youth gambling in general
  2. poker playing specifically
  3. problem gambling
  4. the impact of other people’s gambling

Gambling among 15 to 17 year-olds in Ontario appears to be quite pervasive, both in terms of its frequency and mentality. However, based on the results of the present survey, it appears that only a small proportion of youth gamblers (3.9%) can be classified as problem gamblers according to a standardized measure. Thus, the best strategy for youth awareness and prevention initiatives would seem to be one that focuses on reducing gambling’s potential for harm during adolescence. It would also seem that educating friends and parents about gambling among youth would be worthwhile.

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