Problem Gambling

Published Date: 07 November 2016 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Dennis Tan Lip Fong, Non-Constituency Member of Parliament

Question

To ask the Acting Minister for Education (Schools) (a) how has the Ministry incorporated educational material on the effects of problem gambling into the school syllabus; and (b) whether educators are equipped with the necessary training to counsel students who may encounter problem gambling in their homes.

Response

1. Our Character and Citizenship Education and Cyber Wellness lessons teach our students the dangers of online gambling and other addictive behaviours. Students learn to exercise self-control and to turn away from distractions and temptations. They learn how to lead balanced lives and explore outdoor and healthy leisure activities. They also learn how to support their peers who may need extra help.

2. Teachers who are aware of students facing problem gambling personally or at home will refer them to the school counsellors. Our school counsellors are trained by the National Addictions Management Service which is supported by the Ministry of Health. They are equipped with the skills and knowledge to work with parents to provide appropriate intervention and support for their children in managing addictive behaviour. For more complex cases, schools will refer the students to mental health professionals from the Institute of Mental Health. The school counsellors will also work with the students on coping strategies if any of their family members have problem gambling issues.

3. Our schools also benefit from outreach programmes and roadshows mounted by external agencies such as the National Council on Problem Gambling and Touch Cyber Wellness provide to promote awareness of problem gambling.

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