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Services › Casino and Non-Casino Gaming › Advice for Christchurch earthquake relief fundraising
The Department has established a group of officials to help people wanting to raise funds for Christchurch earthquake relief through schemes that may involve gambling.
Acting Gambling Compliance Director, Debbie Despard, said the Department wants to ensure that money raised will reach the people intended and any harm that may result from gambling is minimised.
“We are aware that already some earthquake fundraising has been shown to involve scams. By maintaining oversight the Department wants to ensure the fundraising is legitimate and complies with gambling rules.
“The Gambling Act 2003 exists primarily for groups to raise funds for the community from gambling. But gambling has inherent risks including crime, fraud and addiction so there are rules to minimise possible harm."
Fundraisers must understand that where a prize winner is to be determined by an element of chance such as a draw, random number generator or roll of the dice then this constitutes gambling (even if it is only part of determining the winner) and will need to comply with the Act.
If the prize winner is determined solely by skill such as judges deciding on the best comment / letter / dance / painting, etc. then this will not be gambling.
Selling tickets online such as by texts or the Internet involves a higher risk of scams and of gambling harm and is not currently allowed under the Gambling Act.
“The Department appreciates that New Zealanders want to help Christchurch by raising money and we would encourage them to approach us directly to ensure their fundraising activity can go ahead,” Debbie Despard said.
For assistance please contact the Gambling Compliance Group.
The Department has been asked how gaming machine trusts can donate to Christchurch earthquake relief within the rules of the Gambling Act 2003.
First, they should decide which of the recognised appeal funds they wish to contribute to, such as the Government’s Christchurch Earthquake Appeal, which is led by the Chief Executive of NZX, Mark Weldon, or the Red Cross.
The trust could provide the chosen organisation with a partially completed grant application form highlighting any additional information that is required. The usual quotes or costs breakdown that accompany such funding requests will not be required.
If trusts wanted to make a "collective" grant then they could collectively decide which appeal(s) to support and then act individually.