Thursday, 2 July 2009

Coles' Pokies Part 6

Mr Hadler promptly responded to the last post.

He wrote that my approach raised concerns that I was not acting in good faith and was more interested in generating coverage for my cause and forcing a public position rather than genuine dialogue. He also thought it sensible to meet and form a constructive relationship.

He also stated that there was genuine concern that might not fully be conveyed through written correspondence.

I disagree. Genuine concern is expressed through action and there has been none.

It may well be that inaction is a policy of Coles and its holding company, Wesfarmers; going all the way to its CEO Richard Goyder.
Sen Nick Xenophon wrote to Richard Goyder on 28 May. I got a copy of the letter late last week. Here it is:
"Dear Mr Goyder

RE: Poker machine venues attracting families and children

I am sure that you will by now be aware of a coffee table book published by PokieAct.org founder Paul Bendat and launched by Paul, myself and Reverend Tim Costello a few weeks ago. A copy of the book is enclosed.

The book was prompted by concerns that exposure to gambling practices would ‘normalise’ gambling for children, making them at higher risk of becoming problem gamblers as they got older.

In a foreword to the book, leading gambling researcher Dr Charles Livingstone of Monash University wrote:
“One of the ways in which pokie gambling is ‘normalised’ – made to seem like an everyday, average sort of activity – is by exposing young children to poker machine venues in the company of family and friends. … allowing children to accompany adults to gaming venues, and indeed encouraging this by providing free play rooms, free meals and so on, is likely to result in the development of problems later in life. Pokie gambling is a potentially dangerous activity and children should not be encouraged to think it’s just another harmless pastime.”

I am writing to you to encourage you to look at how Coles, a nationally respected and trusted brand, can change its practices to protect our children from harm. I will also be looking at possible legislative changes on this issue.

Copies of the book are also being forwarded to the Prime Minister, Leader of the Opposition, State Premiers and the CEO of Woolworths. I would appreciate the opportunity to meet with you to discuss this important issue."
There has been no response from Mr Goyder.

1 comment:

Judy said...

"... more interested in generating coverage for my cause and forcing a public position rather than genuine dialogue" - - exactly, that's what this blog is all about isn't it! To me, Mr Hadler's concern suggests that a public position need not be genuine.