“Tumbling Dice” — “I couldn’t see any light at the end of the tunnel. I wanted to die.”

Press Release
For Immediate Release


“Tumbling Dice” — “I couldn’t see any light at the end of the tunnel. I wanted to die.”

October 14, 2003

The daily, 1 ½-hour drives to Atlantic City casinos often left John heading for home at 4 a.m., nodding out behind the wheel. “I really think it’s a miracle something really bad didn’t happen to me,” said the recovering gambling addict. “It was an incomprehensible, demoralizing disease.”

“The gambling, the stealing, the cheating,” said Bernard, 22, another recovering problem gambler. “It was a pathetic attempt not to face life.”

“I couldn’t see any light at the end of the tunnel,” recalls Sandy, 46. “I wanted to die.”

Compelling stories by these and other recovering gambling addicts Monday in the state Capitol Building in Sacramento highlighted the opening of California’s first annual Responsible Gambling Awareness Week.

Titled “Tumbling Dice,” this weeklong series of symposiums, panel discussions and workshops featuring the nation’s leading experts on gambling addiction will continue 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 15, in the Camilla Room of the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Sacramento. Panel discussions will focus on the causes and treatment of gambling addiction and what California is doing to confront the problem.

Tribal leaders, health care professionals, gambling industry executives, elected officials and members of the press are encouraged to attend Wednesday’s sessions and a concluding series of seminars beginning 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 17, at the Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula. Events are free and no advanced registration is required.

Mark Macarro, chairman of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians, and Philip Satre, chairman, Harrah’s Entertainment Inc., will deliver keynote speeches at Friday’s event in Temecula.
Panel discussions on Friday will focus on the response by tribal governments to gambling addiction. The daylong session will also include a workshop on how employees can respond to customers with problems.

“Tumbling Dice” is sponsored by the California Nations Indian Gaming Association and the California Council on Problem Gambling.

Persons seeking additional information should contact CNIGA or the CCPG.

Schedule of Events:

Public and scientific debate on the cause and treatment of problem and pathological gambling has intensified with the nationwide spread of legal gambling to 47 of the 50 states. Experts in the field discuss what we know, and don’t know, about the cause and treatment of this largely mysterious and growing public health problem.

Moderator: Rachel Volberg, president, Gemini Research
Panelists: Joanna Franklin, director of training and development, Trimeridian
Tim Fong, director, UCLA Impulse Disorders Clinic

States have used a variety of approaches in confronting problem and pathological gambling. Experts in the field discuss what prevention, awareness and treatment strategies work, and which ones don’t.

Moderator: John Gilligan, senior staff clinician, Bensinger, DuPont & Associates
Panelists: Francis Biagioli, executive office, Iowa Gambling Treatment Program
Jeffrey Marotta, problem gambling services manager, Oregon Department of Human Services

12:30-1:30 p.m. LUNCH

Tribal governments, the state of California and the non-profit California Council on Problem Gambling are working together to provide help for the state’s problem and pathological gamblers. Those involved discuss what is being done.

Moderator: Dr. Richard Rosenthal, director, UCLA Center for Gambling Studies
Panelists: David Monti, assistant deputy director, prevention services, California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs.
Jacob Coin, executive director, California Nations Indian Gaming Association
Bebe Smith, executive director, California Council on Problem Gambling

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