WASHINGTON, DC–The DC Lottery is helping to raise awareness of the risks of underage lottery play during the holiday season by reminding shoppers that lottery is not child’s play. In partnership with the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG) and the International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors at McGill University, is using its network of Lottery dealers to make everyone aware of this issue.

According to NCPG, young people report their first gambling experience on average around 9-11 years of age and approximately 80 percent of high-school age adolescents report having gambled for money during the past year.

“We want to ensure the DC Lottery, our retailers, and our players are doing all that we can to be attentive to this issue and prevent any occurrence of underage gambling,” says Executive Director Beth Bresnahan. “While shoppers should appreciate the fun and excitement that accompanies the gift of lottery during the holiday season, but we encourage all to be mindful of age appropriateness and to always gift responsibly.”

Throughout the holiday season, the DC Lottery will utilize its media presence to heighten public attention to this matter including retailer reinforcement training, issue-specific point of sale placards placed in stores, digital signage using out of home advertising, comprehensive social media plan incorporating messaging on our agency’s homepage and social media platforms, digital presence at the Capital One Arena and our flagship store at Union Station.

In addition to these efforts specific to this campaign, as a matter of business and in adherence to District of Columbia law, the DC Lottery strictly prohibits the sale of its games and participation in its promotions to persons under the age of 18. Lottery personnel routinely conduct spot inspections at retailer locations to enforce these restrictions and ensure adherence to DC Lottery rules and procedures regarding the sale of lottery games.