Protect Minnesotans from Predatory Sports Gambling
We Do Not Need Anytime, Anywhere Gambling in Minnesota
Urge your State Representative to vote NO on H.F. 778—legislation that would allow Minnesotans to place mobile sports bets from anywhere in the state.
The Minnesota Legislature is currently voting on a bill that would legalize sports gambling—including making it available through mobile apps.
The Minnesota Catholic Conference is opposing this proposed gambling expansion because sports betting has been proven to be a form of gambling that causes addiction (enslavement) and devastating financial loss (deprivation) for individuals, families, and communities. The bills being considered would create unprecedented access and exposure to sports gambling by allowing wagers to be placed on home computers or mobile devices.
Here are just some of the statistics that reveal the harms of gambling:
- Sports bettors are at least twice as likely to suffer from problem gambling compared to gamblers in general
- Minnesotans lose $325 million per month on gambling already
- Recent studies show that 6 percent of college students have a serious gambling problem
- 37 percent of problem gamblers reported stealing from their workplace
- For each individual with a gambling problem, between eight and ten other people are negatively affected
What MCC has done so far:
- Ryan Hamilton, government relations associate, testified to the House Commerce Finance and Policy Committee: WATCH.
- Helped organize coalition testimony of opposition. Read the following testimony by Les Bernal, National Director of Stop Predatory Gambling, to learn about more of the harms: TESTIMONY.
- The bishops of Minnesota brought their concerns about gambling expansion to the Governor and legislative leadership
- The bishops also joined with faith leaders from around the state to share our opposition to sports gambling: LETTER.
Now we need YOUR voice to stop this insidious bill.
Gambling can enslave and harm families:
The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 2413) states that games of chance (card games, bingo, etc.) or wagers are not in themselves contrary to justice. But it also warns that “the passion for gambling risks becoming an enslavement,” and that wagers “become morally unacceptable when they deprive someone of what is necessary to provide for his needs and those of others.”
Advocates argue legalization is needed to create a regulated market for current players. The reality is, sports gambling is not your friendly wager, church basement bingo, or charitable pull tabs. Faith and reason allow us to make a commonsense distinction between low stakes fundraising events sponsored by charitable organizations, and the normalization of a vice industry whose revenues depend upon those who are (or will become) problem gamblers.
Encourage your legislator to protect our state’s common good by taking a stand against the sportsbooks and multinational casino conglomerates who will pad their pockets with Minnesotans’ losses!
If you have...
One Minute: Send a message to your State Representative urging him or her to protect the common good by resisting the push from gambling companies to allow online sports betting in Minnesota. We should not unleash this insidious industry in our state to benefit a privileged few.
Three Minutes: After sending your elected official a quick email, take another minute to call their office or send a video message. A suggested script and talking points will show up on your device. Legislators do not often get calls from their constituents, so a follow-up call or video will greatly increase your impact and further build your relationship.
More Time: Share our one-pager and our faith leaders' letter with your family and friends to get the word out about problem gambling.