US Soldiers Gamble $100m Each Year On Military Based Slots

US Soldiers Gamble $100m Each Year On Military Based SlotsThe US has around 3,000 slot machines spread out across its 800 military bases around the world, and each year they generate around $100 million in revenues for the Defense Department. While the amount seems high, the figure in itself would not have caused much concern if not for the fact an estimated 36,000 active soldiers are believed to have a gambling problem, with no measures in place to either prevent such problems or provide counseling for those most in need.
This problem is further compounded by the fact a number of studies have concluded that military personnel are more likely to suffer from pathological gambling problems than ordinary members of the general public. This is apparently linked to the fact soldiers who are exposed to violence and high levels of trauma often develop increased risk-taking behavior when returning from deployment. The negative impact associated with problem gambling subsequently threatens the combat readiness of military troops and their ability to respond to combat situations.
As a result, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has now introduced to the U.S. Senate an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, which subsequently paves the way for a Governmental Accountability Office report to be carried out assessing what can be done to improve the situation. As Senator Warren explains:
“By examining the risk of problem gambling among service members and the resources currently available, this amendment is an important first step in helping members of the armed forces and their families who are affected by problem gambling.”
Once concluded, the report should ultimately help set up a military gambling treatment program for current and former members of the armed services. The latest report on the state of gambling addiction inside the military comes a few months after the Pentagon released a report entitled “Government Travel Charge Card Transactions Made at Casinos or Adult Entertainment Establishments” which revealed officials spent $1 million on gambling and around $95k on adult escort in Las Vegas and Atlantic City using official Pentagon travel credit cards.

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