WASHINGTON—Casinos properties and gaming companies across the country are joining together with the American Gaming Association (AGA) and the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG) for the 12th annual Responsible Gaming Education Week (RGEW). The theme for this year’s event, which starts today and runs through Friday, Aug. 7, is “Know the Code” and recognizes the fifth anniversary of the implementation of the AGA Code of Conduct for Responsible Gaming. The goal of the week is for gaming companies to educate their employees about how the Code affects every aspect of their operations.
“Responsible gaming is something that all casinos think about 365 days a year, and it is the AGA Code of Conduct that drives many of their responsible gaming policies and procedures,” said Frank Fahrenkopf, AGA President and CEO. “This year’s RGEW is a fantastic opportunity for gaming companies to reinforce with employees how their jobs are influenced by the guidelines laid out in the Code of Conduct.”
This year’s RGEW gives gaming companies across the country the opportunity to remind employees not only about the industry’s commitment to responsible gaming, but about the specific responsible gaming programs being implemented at their company and/or property to adhere to the Code’s provisions.
The AGA has developed daily employee education activities for RGEW with each day’s suggestions centered on a different section of the Code, ranging from employee training and public education to underage gambling and responsible advertising and alcohol service policies. The activities help gaming properties educate employees about their own policies and available resources.
“Armed with this knowledge, employees can better articulate to customers and the public how their company is committed to responsible gaming,” Fahrenkopf said.
In addition to the coordinated nationwide activities occurring during RGEW, individual casinos and gaming companies have developed creative activities to educate employees and patrons:
- Penn National Gaming, Inc. is implementing the first annual Penn National Responsible Gaming Challenge to encourage creativity among its properties nationwide in increasing employee participation in RGEW and promoting responsible gaming to patrons, the public and employees. The program offers cash prizes for those properties with the most effective and creative activities and ideas. Prize money must be used to benefit the properties’ employees.
- Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, N.J. will educate its associates about the games they offer by setting up roulette and slot machine instruction in employee break areas, and responsible gaming quizzes and puzzles will give team members the chance to have fun while they learn.
- Lady Luck Casino in Caruthersville, Mo. will air public service announcements on local TV channels, in area newspapers and in the casino walkway, while also hosting a responsible gaming information center for patrons and including responsible gaming messages in employees’ paycheck attachments.
- Monte Carlo Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nev. will be promoting RGEW throughout employee areas in the “back of the house” via posters, brochures, employee newsletter articles and through responsible gaming slideshows running on MGM MIRAGE Employee Televisions.
- Ameristar Casinos, Inc. properties in St. Charles and Kansas City, Mo. will educate employees about responsible gaming during pre-shift meetings, publish RGEW articles in employee newsletters and place responsible gaming messages on employees’ computer desktops. Additionally, the properties will work to have proclamations supporting RGEW issued by each city.
- Employees at Grand Biloxi Casino, Hotel & Spa in Biloxi, Miss. will take part in annual refresher training sessions along with puzzle contests and other awareness activities throughout the property.
As it has in past, the AGA also has created buttons, stickers and ribbons for members to make available to their employees to help promote RGEW, and individual properties will display promotional materials and provide both employees and customers with copies of important responsible gaming education materials. All of the AGA’s responsible gaming educational and promotional materials are available in both English and Spanish.
In addition to the Code-driven activity suggestions, the AGA has developed a number of additional materials to enhance the responsible gaming training efforts of individual companies and help them to promote RGEW among their employees and in their communities.
Responsible Gaming Education Week was developed in 1998 as part of the Responsible Gaming National Education Campaign, a long-term, comprehensive program spearheaded by the AGA. RGEW is designed to heighten awareness of responsible gaming and disordered gambling among employees, patrons and the general public.