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Help is available for gambling addicts in Montana - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Help is available for gambling addicts in Montana

Posted: Mar 07, 2018 8:38 AM Updated:
People who need help are encouraged to call the helpline at (888) 900-9979. (MTN News photo) People who need help are encouraged to call the helpline at (888) 900-9979. (MTN News photo)

HELENA – The Montana Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Montana Council on Problem Gambling are partnering to remind the public that help is available as the state's rate of treatment for problem gambling grows.

The Montana Council on Problem Gambling, a non-profit organization which funds outpatient treatment for problem gambling through contracts with more than 24  providers in the state, reports the need for help has been steadily increasing.  

Last year, the Council served almost 1,700 patients compared to around 1,400 in 2016.

“Problem gambling is a behavior that damages relationships, runs up large debts, and sometimes leads to criminal activity,” said Attorney General Tim Fox in a news release.  “People with gambling problems are found in every demographic of our society.  Warning signs include a preoccupation with gambling, a need to gamble with increasing amounts of money, and trying to make up losses by additional gambling.  I encourage folks who think they have a problem to call the Montana Council on Problem Gambling’s helpline today for a treatment referral.”

“Issues with gambling go hand in hand with other addictive tendencies, but problem gambling tends to be treated less often.  The growing need for accessible resources in Montana presents us with the challenge to do our best to help families and individuals coping with the effects of problem gambling," Montana Council on Problem Gambling executive director Brad Longcake said.

DOJ’s Gambling Control Division, in conjunction with the Montana Council on Problem Gambling, is collaborating on an outreach campaign to increase awareness of problem gambling and provide help for those in need of support.

Coasters advertising the Montana Council on Problem Gambling’s free 24-hour problem gambling helpline will be distributed across the state soon.  People who need help are encouraged to call the helpline at (888) 900-9979 or one of the Gamblers Anonymous hotlines available in Montana.

Click here for more information from the Montana Department of Justice.

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