The Conservative Party Conference, held on October 3, 2023, featured a panel session titled “The Gambling White Paper: Implications for Treatment”. Organized by Gordon Moody and Green Pen Consulting, the session brought together influential figures including DCMS Minister Stuart Andrew MP, Matthew Hickey (CEO of Gordon Moody), Graham England (CEO of Addiction Recovery Agency), and Sarah Forshaw (Head of Service Development at Gordon Moody).

The attendees included Members of Parliament, Conservative Party members, and journalists. During the panel session, Jane Rigbye (CEO at Ygam) emphasized the importance of a new levy system focusing on education and prevention of gambling harms, if implemented.

All panel members unanimously agreed that the new levy should provide equal opportunities for funding. Rigbye further stressed the need to eliminate the perception that organizations working in the current system are not independent from industry funders. She emphasized that funding decisions should be based on the quality, scalability, and impact of services rather than misguided narratives.

Rigbye also advised that the new levy should distinguish between research, education, and treatment programs and services. She expressed concern that the lack of clarity surrounding the levy has led to reluctance among donors to commit to funding until the consultation period is clearer and the new system is established. This hesitation poses the risk of disrupting or discontinuing services currently provided by organizations that rely on the current system.

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