Melbourne suburb puts $14.6 million through pokies in one month

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Melbourne residents are putting huge amounts of money through the pokies after last year’s lockdown.

Gamblers in Melbourne’s west are haemorrhaging almost half a million dollars a day on poker machines.

Despite last year’s months-long lockdown, staggering new figures show the losses have gotten worse.

9News spoke to Oscar, 68, who admitted he was a compulsive gambler who had lost “maybe $200,000” on the pokies.

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“It’s worse than heroin or cocaine or alcohol,” he said.

In March, gamblers in the western suburb of Brimbank put more than $14.6 million through the pokies – the most in Melbourne.

In the past 10 years, the people of Brimbank Shire have lost a collective $1 billion on the pokies, which Mayor Georgina Papafotiou said was “immoral and wrong”.

She said the council had no influence over industry regulation, and is calling on the state government to step in with strong action.

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There are further calls for gambling reform and oversight.

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“When 12 percent of your revenue in government (that) you can raise comes from pokies there is too much easy cash for the state treasury,” she said.

Premier Daniel Andrews’ office has said it is already working on the issue, freezing pokies numbers across the state, limiting early cash withdrawals, and capping the number of pokies in areas most vulnerable to gambling harm.

If you need support visit, Gambling Help Online.

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