Fact Sheet 13

Other actions that might accompany a community survey

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A range of information has been presented to both VCAT and VCGLR in an attempt to communicate some of the potential social impacts of EGMs on the community. This fact sheet briefly outlines some of the approaches that community groups have taken in order to communicate their concerns about EGMs. For an understanding of whether these actions influenced the decision about the EGM application please refer to Fact Sheet 6 Relevant EGM decisions that Considered Community Surveys.

 

Local Communications

 

Community groups and councils have used a range of approaches to communicate with and inform the local community about the application for EGMs and seek broader community comment. It is important that these communications include accurate information about the proposal. Actions have included:

 

  • Community meetings advertised in local media and chaired by an independent person
  • Media releases such as radio interviews and local newspaper articles informing the community about the application and potential community meeting dates
  • Information posts at local events – i.e. a card table and local residents providing written and verbal information about the application and related community meetings (NB: It is important to gain permission to conduct the information post or ascertain the regulations, for example, it might be a requirement that an information post is no closer than 400 metres to an event – check with the event organisers first)
  • Public Forums held locally or at a central location with key speakers who are able to talk about the EGM industry and know the social and economic benefits and impacts

 

Audio Visual Material

Community groups have used a range of audio visual materials to communicate local issues at a hearing related to EGMs. This approach helps to communicate the social, or qualitative, impact of EGM gaming where numerical data may be limited. Examples of audio visual material that have been used by community groups responding to EGM applications include:

 

Facebook – local individuals and organisations have, at times, set up pages on web sites such as Facebook to communicate the details of the application and generate local debate. It is important to note that such web sites have been used as communication tools and not as a representative sample of community responses to the issue.
YouTube video – local individuals have also created videos and songs and posted these on YouTube as a way of more widely communicating their concerns about the application.

 

Video Evidence – community groups also have presented video evidence of the potential impact of EGMs on the local community. These videos have been shown at recent hearings and have included community members and representatives of local organisations talking about the impact of problem gambling on themselves, their families and the local community. For an understanding of the impact of these techniques on the hearing and the final decision go to Fact Sheet 6 Relevant EGM decisions that Considered Community Surveys

 

Expert Evidence Reports – Most of the material communicated at a hearing related to EGMs is in the form of expert evidence reports. These are usually prepared by independent experts who are qualified to conduct an assessment of the potential social and economic impacts, planning issues, or expenditure analysis related to the application.  See Fact Sheet 11 Tips on Conducting a Social and Economic Impact Assessment of an Application for EGMs and What is the role of local communities in the application process?

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