Michael has called for Government to help end national lottery provider Camelot’s complacency in a Westminster Hall debate on the future of society lotteries on Tuesday (12).
Intervening early in the debate, Michael said: “Whether one admires Camelot or not, is not the real difficulty Camelot’s length of tenure as an operator? It becomes more and more difficult to know whether it is performing as well as possible. The metrics simply are not there due to the monopoly that it has enjoyed.”
Society lotteries are different from the national lottery in many ways. The main difference is the prize cap: society lotteries are limited to 10 per cent of the value of any one draw. Most high street charities run society lotteries, raising money for good causes such as cancer research, military charities, disability support charities and animal welfare charities.
Michael made the point that society lotteries are not in competition with the national lottery and that what they do complements it. Because the causes for which society charities support are often locally based on peoples’ doorsteps, the case was made for the regulations and caps on society lotteries to be lifted and raised for the benefit of charities in constituencies across the country.
The local MP joined the cross-party calls for Government to give society lotteries the freedom to succeed and consumers the choice of causes to support.
Intervening on the Minister’s response to the debate, he said: “No one doubts the success of the national lottery. It is an enormous achievement and we should be very proud of it. But how do we know whether a quarter of a century further on it will continue to be as successful as it could be?”
The Minister replied that the Government and Gambling Commission are constantly reviewing the national lottery, but recognised that there needs to be a healthy mixture of lotteries, signalling that the government will take action on the points raised in the debate.