The name TXT2X means text to exclude, and the initiative supports people concerned about their gambling to exclude themselves from multiple gaming (pokie machine) areas using the Multi Venue Exclusion (MVE) process.
People are asked to send the word TXT2X to 3165 (at no cost) and will then be contacted by a Ngā Kete staff member within 24 hours to arrange an appointment for MVE support, information, advice and gambling harm support. Best of all, it is free!
MVE is a process which allows a person who feels they need support with their gambling to request to be excluded from one or more gaming (pokie machine) areas in Invercargill and Bluff venues for up to two years.
Gambling Harm Health Promoter Eru Loach says the TXT2X initiative was designed to enable ease of access to gambling harm services, and allow the person to feel more comfortable to ask for help rather than having to approach the gaming venue, club or tavern staff.
TXT2X is also available for affected family members to make contact with Nga Kete to understand gambling harm and be offered tools and resources to strengthen their whanau.
Along with the relaunch of TXT2X, a nationwide electronic database software product, CONCERN, has been launched by the Ministry of Health to assist the gambling sector with the management of gambler venue exclusion (including multi-venue exclusion) processes.
CONCERN is a cloud-based database that will enable all interested parties to electronically manage the exclusion process more efficiently.
Mr Loach says the benefit of CONCERN is that the exclusion process is simpler and more streamlined than it was in the past.
“We are now in a time of change and we need to be smarter in how we work, particularly when it comes to the health and wellbeing of individuals and whanau affected by gambling harm. Ngā Kete will be able to access the CONCERN database to support people wanting Multi Venue Exclusion, thus reducing their access to pokie machines causing them harm, and improving wellness in the whanau and our communities. A win win for everyone!”
All 9 of the ILT Venues that have gaming machines have undertaken preliminary training for the Ministry of Health's new database 'CONCERN' and are supporting the TXT2X launch with promotional material in all ILT venues.
ILT Foundation Manager Lisa-Maree Fleck says "we are committed to providing safe, enjoyable gaming venues and minimising gambling harm. We are looking forward to having TXT2X available to our venue staff as an avenue to directly connect those who may need support to local expertise at NKMP."
CONCERN went live on 20 July 2020.