Gambling is not a way to make money.
Put another way, you’re not going to get rich.
It’s just for fun, whether it be dabbing the final letter on a bingo card or getting lucky with the spin of the roulette wheel.
To keep people aware of that, BC Lottery Corp. provides GameSense advisers in every casino, people like Tyler Green, who walks the game floor at the new Cascades Casino Delta, which opened in September.
Green operates out of a GameSense Info Centre, a cubicle that provides a physical break from the casino and from the noise and coloured lights that hypnotize.
“A big part of what I do as a GameSense adviser is, I help build relationships with some of the players that come to the casino,” he said.
That doesn’t mean he approaches people and asks them if they have a gambling problem.
Instead, “It’s, ‘Hi, how’s your day going?’ We’ll talk about general things.” Then if they have questions about gambling, he’ll provide the answers to those, Green explained.
In addition to the pamphlets and virtual GameSense advisers, (GameSense.com) there’s information about the Voluntary Self Exclusion Program where people can sign up and have themselves excluded from any B.C. casino for a period of time.
One of the most common questions he gets from customers is how to play a certain game or slot machine, which is why there’s a demonstration slot machine in the information centre to give newbies the basics of electronic gaming.
But he’s also there to steer people in the right direction if their gambling is causing a problem and to offer tips on how to keep gambling fun.
Green said there’s no specific way to tell if someone has a problem with gambling, unless they tell him, although there are some signs, such as if someone comes into the casino often or is spending large amounts of money.
That’s why it’s good to build those relationships beforehand so that people are comfortable talking to him if they do get into situations later.
The major message they try to impart is that gambling is for fun.
“I think that’s an important thing to have when you come into a casino, is a realistic expectation,” said Green. “You want to hope for a win, but certainly don’t expect to win…you’re there to have fun, not to make money.”
At the information centre, which is partially enclosed, people can also get a physical break.
Green said there is no one, single major problem or situation he encounters that leads to problem gambling.
“Everybody’s story is a little different, that’s why it’s important to build those relationships over time and to listen to them to see how he can help,” he added.