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Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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Match-fixing: the Australian legislative response

The Australian Crime Commission Report into Organised Crime and Drugs in Sport raised the issue of the increasing level of association between professional athletes and organised criminal identities in Australia, leaving individual athletes vulnerable to corrupt practices such as match-fixing. One of the key findings is that the threat to the integrity of Australian sport is an emerging and critical issue which must be addressed now.In the wake of the South Australian and now Victorian Governments introducing bills to directly criminalise match-fixing, what is the rest of the country doing?‘On 10 June 2011, all Australian sports ministers endorsed on behalf of their governments, a National P... Read more...

Is counselling for pokie addiction an effective harm minimisation measure?

At a rally at the Canterbury RSL in western Sydney on Tuesday evening, the opposition leader Tony Abbott predicted a future Coalition government would rescind any legislation that introduces mandatory pre-commitment on electronic gaming machines (EGMs). Instead of mandatory pre-commitment, he suggested a greater focus on individual counselling for problem gamblers is needed.If the opposition leader's support for counselling results in more funding for such services, many who provide help to Australia's estimated 95,000 EGM problem gamblers and their families will probably welcome it. But the efficacy of counselling as a harm minimisation measure is questionable; it is not clear that increase... Read more...

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