The World Lottery Association (WLA) has praised Lotto New Zealand for its commitment to responsible gambling. Internal Affairs Minister Hon Peter Dunne announced that the international body has officially certified Lotto New Zealand as Level Three within its Responsible Gambling Framework, meaning it has been judged to provide a safe gaming environment and to display high levels of corporate social responsibility. Lotto New Zealand’s is one of only two Level Three awards in the entire Asia Pacific region.
The WLA operates a four-tier accreditation system, adjudicated on by a panel of independent assessors, in which there are ten core elements: research; employee education; retailer training and support; game design; online gaming; advertising and marketing; player education; treatment referral; stakeholder engagement; and reporting and measurement.
The aim of this international benchmarking system, which assesses the responsible gaming conduct of lotteries in over 90 countries, is to provide a fair and transparent environment for lottery players across the globe. Lotto New Zealand was previously awarded a Level Two certificate in 2009.
The process of accreditation is extremely rigorous, and so this Level Three certification is seen as international recognition for the safe and socially aware way in which Lotto New Zealand operates the nation’s lottery. Wayne Pickup, Chief Executive of Lotto New Zealand said, “Responsible gaming is an integral part of our day-to-day business, from the way we design and market our games, to the training and support we provide our retailers and the information we provide our players. Our games are intended to be fun and rewarding entertainment—and we want to keep it that way.”
However Lotto New Zealand, which began in 1987 and raises money that is used to benefit the wider community through grants distributed by the NZ Lottery Grants Board, is not resting on its laurels, according to Wayne Pickup. “We want to be better and do better every year. Lotto New Zealand’s vision is to be a world leading lottery for the maximum benefit of New Zealand communities, and we want to ensure that we are operating our business in a sustainable and responsible way.”
Lotto New Zealand contributed over $200 million to the Lottery Grants Board in 2013, with these funds going to major sporting and cultural institutions, such as the New Zealand Film Commission, Creative New Zealand and Sport New Zealand, as well as to ovear 3000 smaller community groups and projects. In September 2013, the largest ever individual Powerball prize of $33 million was won by a player in West Auckland.