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Correlates of reported gambling problems in the CALD population of Australia

Stevens, Matthew R., Golebiowska, Kate and Morrison, Perry R. (2010). Correlates of reported gambling problems in the CALD population of Australia<br />. VIC, Melbourne: Office of Gaming and Racing, Department of Justice Melbourne.

Document type: Research Report
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Author Stevens, Matthew R.
Golebiowska, Kate
Morrison, Perry R.
Title of Report Correlates of reported gambling problems in the CALD population of Australia
Publication Date 2010
Publisher Office of Gaming and Racing, Department of Justice Melbourne
Place of Publication VIC, Melbourne
Total Pages 70
Abstract This report deals with the issue of gambling problems within Australia’s Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities (CALD). It addresses the following research questions using 2002 and 2006 General Social Survey (thereafter GSS) data:
1. Does the CALD population experience gambling problems amongst social and family networks at higher levels than the non-CALD population in Australia?
2. Does the CALD population experience other life stressors at higher levels than the non-CALD population in Australia?
3. Are there differences between the CALD and non-CALD populations in the interrelationships between gambling problems and other NLES items?
4. Is being a member of the CALD population significantly associated with reported gambling problems after taking into account other significant predictors of the reported gambling problems in the general population?

Chapter 2 presents descriptive statistics using 2002 and 2006 GSS data obtained from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), with comparisons made between the CALD and non- CALD population for demographic, socioeconomic, social connectedness and health variables. Chapter 3 then summarises literature from both Australia and overseas on problem gambling in CALD populations. Chapter 4 provides a detailed statistical analysis identifying associations between reported gambling problems and other negative life events, as well as determining the relationship between CALD status and related variables with reported gambling problems. Chapter 5 provides a discussion of the results, and Chapter 6 summarises key findings and offers issues for consideration to monitor and reduce gambling-related harm.

The measurement of gambling problems in Australian Bureau of Statistics surveys is captured using the Negative Life Events Scale (NLES). The NLES asks respondents have any of these things [list of “stressors” or “negative life events”] been a problem for you or your family or friends during the last year? Respondents then answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to a list of 12 stressors or negative life events namely:  gambling problem; divorce or separation; death of family member or close friend; serious illness or disability; close friend of family in a serious accident; alcohol or drug related problems; not able to get a job; lost job, made redundant, sacked; witness to violence; victim of abuse or violent crime; trouble with the police; and mental illness.

It is apparent from the wording of the NLES question that the instrument does not measure problem gambling prevalence. It asks respondents if gambling has …been a problem for you, your family or close friends during the last year. Therefore, the NLES gambling problem item measures the reach or extent of gambling problems throughout peoples’ social and family networks. It is not an individual measure of problem gambling prevalence. This broader conceptualisation of gambling-related harm is consistent with the Australian definition of problem gambling which states “problem gambling is characterised by difficulties in limiting money and/or time spent on gambling which leads to adverse consequences for the gambler, others, or for the communities” (Neal, Delfabbro and O'Neil 2005).

Characteristics of the CALD population
Descriptive statistics are presented in Chapter 2 highlighting differences between the 2002 and 2006 CALD and non-CALD populations using data from the GSS. This information can be used to help contextualise the findings from the analyses carried out in Chapter 4.

Approximately three-quarters of the 2002 and 2006 adult CALD population lived in New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria (VIC), compared with just fewer than 60% of the adult non- CALD population. In 2002, the CALD population was over-represented in older age groups, but these differences were less apparent in 2006. The CALD population tended to live in multi-family households, which translated into higher levels of household crowding compared with the non-CALD population for both 2002 and 2006. The CALD population was also more likely to be living in couple with children households and less likely to be living in lone person and couple without children households. Markers of socioeconomic status revealed that the CALD population, while having higher levels of education, were also more likely to be earning less income and be unemployed. However, the CALD population were also less likely to report financial stress in the 12 months preceding the surveys. The CALD population were less likely to participate in social activities including attendance and participation in sports, attending café/bars, participating in arts and craft groups and other recreational activities. However, they were more likely to participate in religious activities.

The descriptive statistics comparing the CALD and non-CALD populations highlight differences across demographic, socioeconomic and social connectedness variables, which all point to the CALD population exhibiting a range of protective factors in relation to developing gambling problems
Additional Notes Funded by the State and Territory Governments and the Australian Government. Published on behalf of Gambling Research Australia By the Office of Gaming and Racing Department of Justice Melbourne Victoria Australia September 2010
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Created: Tue, 19 Jan 2016, 12:34:00 CST by Marion Farram