ILLINOIS LOTTERY REMINDER:  ‘TIS THE SEASON TO GIFT RESPONSIBLY

With the holiday gift-giving season underway, the Illinois Lottery offers a reminder to players that lottery games are for grown-ups – not kids.

This holiday season, the Illinois Lottery once again partners with the Illinois Council on Problem Gambling (ICPG) in the Gift Responsibly Campaign.  The annual holiday campaign, spearheaded by the National Council on Problem Gambling, is designed to increase public awareness of the impact and inappropriateness of giving lottery products as gifts to minors.

Lottery products, especially Instant Tickets, are a popular gift during the holiday season but they are not an appropriate gift for those under the age of 18,” said Harold Mays, Illinois Lottery Director.  “Responsible gaming is an integral part of the Illinois Lottery, and we are pleased to once again support the Gift Responsibly Campaign this holiday season by reminding players that lottery games are for adults only.

The Illinois Lottery joins a network of more than 80 national and international lotteries which encourage players to gamble responsibly, and to help keep the holiday season festive by gifting lottery tickets only to adults.  Non-lottery organizations are also participating in the campaign, as an effort to increase awareness of the risks of underage lottery play, during the holiday season.

Studies have shown that gambling at an early age can increase the risk of problem gambling later in life, including a strong association between age of gambling onset and problem gambling severity among those who receive lottery tickets,” said Dave Wohl, Executive Director at ICPG.  “We value our partnership with the Illinois Lottery and applaud their commitment to raise awareness about the risks of youth gambling through the Gift Responsibly Campaign.”

In addition to the Gift Responsibly campaign, the Illinois Lottery promotes responsible play year round by reminding players to Be Smart, Play Smart®.  Players are encouraged to play for fun, not funds, and to set a budget and stick to it.  For more information on how to play and gift responsibly, please go to the Illinois Lottery website and visit the Responsible Gaming page.

If you or someone you know may be experiencing problems when playing lottery games, please call 1-800-GAMBLER.  This toll-free helpline is answered by trained specialists 24/7/365.

About the Illinois Lottery:
Founded in 1974, the Illinois Lottery has contributed over $24 billion (since 1985) to the state’s Common School Fund to assist K-12 public schools, as well as hundreds of millions of dollars to the Capital Projects Fund and to special causes.  For more information, visit IllinoisLottery.com.

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