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Welcome to the the Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling
We understand the problem. We can help.

We are a private, non-profit health agency
dedicated to reducing the social, financial, and emotional costs of problem gambling.

 

Help for a gambling disorder

HELP FOR YOU

Do you feel that gambling may be a problem for you?

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Help for Professionals

HELP FOR PROFESSIONALS

Do you feel that gambling could be a problem for someone you’re helping?

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Help for Families

HELP FOR FAMILIES

Do you feel someone you love might be gambling too much?

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Quick Gambling Facts

Gambling: 1a) to play a game for money or property, 1b) to bet on an uncertain outcome 2) to stake something on a contingency: take a chance
Gambling Disorder: or gambling addiction (formerly known as pathological gambling), is a persistent and recurrent problematic gambling behavior that causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning
Recent research has estimated the number of U.S. citizens who gamble, the number who met the criteria for having a clinical gambling disorder and also for those who have a gambling disorder but have not met the diagnostic criteria that would be considered "sub-clinical" or "problem gamblers."
  • Gambling rate: research has estimated that nearly 80% of the U.S. population has gambled during their lifetime.
  • Disordered Gambler rate: research has estimated that approximately 1% of the U.S. population have met the disordered gambler clinical criteria in their lifetime.
  • Problem gambler rate: research has estimated that approximately 2% have experienced sub-clinical problem gambling in their lifetimes. The Mass. Council recognizes that approximately 2-3% of the population has experienced disordered gambling in their lifetimes.
  • Disordered gambling in Massachusetts: based on national estimates, between 150,000 and 200,000 Massachusetts residents likely have experienced disordered gambling during their lifetimes.
Anyone can develop a problem with gambling, regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, or socio-economic status. Though disordered gambling does not discriminate, research has shown that the following groups are more susceptible to the addiction of the disorder.
Higher Frequency of Gambling Disorder
  • Males
  • Single adults
  • Those exposed to gambling environments (friends and family who gamble)
  • Those who started to gamble at a younger age
  • Excitement-seeking personality traits
  • Childhood maltreatment
  • Parental gambling involvement
  • Gamblers who smoke cigarettes
  • Gamblers with alcohol or drug dependence
  • Gamblers with obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Gamblers with higher anxiety or depression
  • Gamblers with higher impulsivity and antisocial personality traits
  • Gamblers who report gambling on electronic gambling machines (e.g. slot machines)
  • College Students
  • In adults, frequency of online gambling has been associated with gambling problems
  • Internet gambling has also been associated with heavy alcohol consumption in adults.
  • Data suggest that internet gambling may be strongly associated with disordered gambling and other adverse measures in adults.
  • Adolescent Internet gamblers are more likely to exhibit at-risk disordered gambling behavior than non-Internet adolescent gamblers
Help for people experiencing problems with gambling, their family members, and the greater community is available:
  • The Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling operates a free, confidential Helpline (800-426-1234), and online chat.
  • The Mass. Council also provides a website geared towards teenagers: teensknowyourlimits.org
  • The Mass. Council trains clinicians and maintains a list of professionals who have earned their Massachusetts Problem Gambling Specialist Certificate (MA PGS).
  • The Massachusetts Department of Public Health funds treatment centers throughout the state.
  • Many people experiencing problems with gambling join Gamblers Anonymous (GA) or Bettors Anonymous (BA).
  • Spouses, significant others, and family members of people experiencing problems with gambling can attend Gam-Anon, a fellowship that meets to share experiences about living with a disordered gambler.
  • For more information or to have a packet of materials sent to you, please call the Mass. Council Helpline (800-426-1234), the business line (617-426-4554), e-mail the Council at info@masscompulsivegambling.org, or visit 190 High Street, Suite 5, Boston, MA 02110-3031

Latest News and Blog Posts

by Jodie Nealley,Intervention and Recovery Support Coordinator, and Scott Melissa, Human Resources Director,Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling

The last three recovery themed blogs talked about relapse prevention, maintaining ones recovery and alternative ways to stay in recovery. Another essential tool of long lasting recovery is employment.

Maslow’s hierarchy, seen below, lists employment right above basic physiological humans needs.

chart

 

Being in recovery is difficult, but having steady, fulfilling work can be a great asset in its maintenance.

Upcoming Events

  • Recognizing and Managing Countertransference in Problem Gambling Clinical Work

    This course is being held online though Middlesex Community College Presenter:          Geoffrey Locke, LICSW, PhD Clock Hours:                12 This advanced-level online course is an intensive study of countertransference and how it impacts clinical judgment and treatment. Participants will engage in online discussions after reading relevant scholarly articles, explore familiar clinical concepts in the context of problem gambling, and engage in interactive clinical case study reviews with the focus on individuals struggling with gambling disorder. Save 10% on the cost of admission if you’re a member! Contact Grassroots and Community Relations Manager, Brianne Tolson to find out how to become a member today! If you are deaf or hard of hearing, or are a person with a disability who requires accommodation, please contact Intervention and Treatment Support Manager, Alicia Barron, at 617.426.4554, Fax: 617.426.4555, TTY: 617.426.1855 by February 13, 2015 for accommodations. NBCC ACEP No. 6331  
  • Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling Training Institute

    Date & Time:    The Training Institute meets from 3pm - 7pm, once per week, for the following eight Mondays:

    March 2, 2015

    March 9, 2015

    March 16, 2015

    March 23, 2015

    March 30, 2015

    April 6, 2015

    April 27, 2015

    May 4, 2015

    Presenters:     Victor Ortiz, MSW, LADC I, CADC II, Eunice Aviles, PsyD, LMHC Clock Hours:              32 The Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling Training Institute’s goals are to increase:
    • the number of social service providers able to recognize and treat gambling disorder
    • access to comprehensive and competent care
    • service and treatment delivery, and
    • improve treatment outcomes
    The Institute provides a comprehensive delivery of gambling-specific trainings for social service providers in order to build knowledge in the area of gambling disorder. At the conclusion of the eight-week training process, individuals will be able to meet the MA PGS training standards and certificate training requirements. Save 10% on the cost of admission if you’re a member! Contact Grassroots and Community Relations Manager, Brianne Tolson to find out how to become a member today! If you are deaf or hard of hearing, or are a person with a disability who requires accommodation, please contact Intervention and Treatment Support Manager, Alicia Barron, at 617.426.4554, Fax: 617.426.4555, TTY: 617.426.1855 by February 16, 2015 for accommodations. NBCC ACEP No. 6331    
  • Supporting Recovery in the Era of Expanded Gambling

    Presenter:          Panel discussion, Moderator: Victor Ortiz, MSW, LADC I, CADC II Clock Hours:                    4 People in recovery from gambling addiction face unique challenges as they enter and maintain recovery. As gambling opportunities expand within the Commonwealth, so will the needs for recovery support services for people with gambling addiction. This workshop will discuss and explore strategies for supporting recovery, as well as how to integrate awareness of problem gambling within the existing structure of recovery support services. Panelists will provide a firsthand account of problem gambling and support services they have integrated into their programs.  Save 10% on the cost of admission if you’re a member! Contact Grassroots and Community Relations Manager, Brianne Tolson to find out how to become a member today! If you are deaf or hard of hearing, or are a person with a disability who requires accommodation, please contact Intervention and Treatment Support Manager, Alicia Barron, at 617.426.4554, Fax: 617.426.4555, TTY: 617.426.1855 by February 20, 2015 for accommodations. NBCC ACEP No. 6331