Muskingum Behavior Health worried about addiction due to sports betting

Local News

ZANESVILLE, Ohio- The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on May 14th that states could allow legalized sports gambling.

This means sports betting in the state of Ohio could become legal. If it does happen, some people with Muskingum Behavior Health are worried about an increase in gambling addiction.

“It can increase the likelihood that somebody would have more problems with gambling in the future. Another avenue to be able to gamble more money away and get into more serious problems sooner,” said Chemical Dependency Counselor Gail Schultice.

Schultice said the number of people struggling with gambling addiction in Ohio has doubled from 5 percent to 10 percent from 2012 to 2016.

“Part of what increased from 2012 to 2016 was the opening of casinos here in the state. Often times they don’t really recognize that (gambling addiction) is an issue for themselves until it gets to the place where their starting to lose their homes or can’t make their car payments. The electricity gets shut off. It doesn’t matter, family members or loved ones that are concerned about them say ‘gee looks like you’re really having a problem here’,” said Schultice.

Sports betting had previously been legal in Nevada. The state’s gaming control board reported $4.8 billion were bet on sports, in Nevada, in 2017.