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Mission Australia launches gambling counselling service

Anti-gambling charity Mission Australia is using shock tactics to launch a new counselling service.

An image of a mouth sewn together is used to convey the tendency of problem gambers to lie or keep secrets about their behaviour.

The campaign is part of the ACT Problem Gambling Awareness Week.

It will run in transit advertising, digital banners and in-venue posters as well as print.

The campaign was created by Stuart Ghent and Nik Robinson at Sydney creative agency Cabana Boys.

Ghent explained the thinking behind the campaign: “We had to say that this service understands the problems gamblers face, the way they are feeling and the pain they are going through.

“Even if gambling hasn’t yet become a financial issue for the gambler, there is a range of behaviours that indicate it is in fact a problem – chasing losses and giving up other social activities to gamble, to name two others.

“But of those behaviours, lying or keeping secrets about gambling is almost universal. Even small lies at some level say that the person knows what they are doing is wrong, but they can’t change.

Ghent and Robinson were behind the ‘Gambling hangover’ campaign for the Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing in 2006, during their time at The Campaign Palace.

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