Canadians Divided on Expanding Gambling in Their Provinces, New Poll Shows

canada online gambling

While some individuals and groups may have concerns about the potential negative impacts of gambling, such as addiction and financial problems, others may support the expansion of gambling as a source of revenue for governments and a form of entertainment for adults.

Some Canadians don’t want more gambling in their Great White North

The latest Angus Reid Institute poll reveals that only 1 in 10 Canadians approve of expanding gambling operations in their province. Another poll showed that 4 in 10 Canadians would like to reduce gambling operations. While only 1 in 10 agree to have more gambling activities, it was a surprise that over 60% of respondents have favoured their province’s current gambling regulations and conditions.

It’s an astounding finding that more than half of respondents think that online gambling is the most harmful type of gambling. Online gambling was seen as a threat considering that family members have endured problem gambling issues with other forms of gambling.

Here are the results of the Angus Reid Institute survey:

  • Lotteries (82%)
  • Charitable Gambling (43%)
  • Casinos (32%)
  • Video Lottery terminals at a bar or pub (14%)
  • Sports Betting (13%)
  • Racetrack Betting (10%)

How’s Canadian Online Gambling Now?

The provinces that have online gambling through lottery monopolies have higher online participation. Online gambling provinces like British Columbia (18%), Atlantic Canada (16%) Quebec (15%) and Ontario (14%) scored higher rates. Alberta (12%) and Saskatchewan (10%) don’t have an online gambling presence yet.

Canadians who admitted gambling online 24% spent nothing in the previous 30 days, 37% spent less than $25, 29% spent between $25-$100 and 10% spent over $100. Online gambling was seen as the most harmful type of gambling.

Online Gambling’s Effects Remain to be Seen in Canada

The most interesting finding from the Angus Reid survey is that online gambling was the least cause of a family member’s problem gambling issues. The survey says (9%) ranked well below VLTs (30%), casinos (23%) and lotteries (19%).

This only shows that the effects of online gambling have yet to become an issue in Canada. It also shows that the online gambling industry is just starting to develop in several Canadian provinces. Amendments to regulate online gambling are in the legislative discussion agenda already.

Economic benefits and drawbacks of expanding gambling operations in Canada

Expanding gambling operations in Canada could bring both economic benefits and drawbacks. Proponents argue that increased gambling could lead to job creation and increased revenue for the government. More casinos and gambling establishments could also attract more tourists to Canada, boosting the tourism industry.

On the other hand, opponents are concerned about the social costs of gambling, such as addiction and crime. Increased gambling could exacerbate these issues, leading to social problems and increased costs for the government. Additionally, there are concerns about the potential negative effects of gambling on vulnerable populations such as low-income individuals and young people. Overall, there are both potential benefits and drawbacks to expanding gambling operations in Canada, and careful consideration must be taken before making any decisions on the matter.

Role of government in regulating gambling in Canada

In Canada, the role of the government in regulating gambling varies by jurisdiction. While the federal government holds authority over criminal law and certain aspects of gambling, such as pari-mutuel betting on horse racing, the majority of gambling regulation falls under the responsibility of the provinces. As a result, there is a patchwork of regulations and policies across the country, with some provinces offering online gambling while others do not.

The provinces have established their regulatory bodies, which are responsible for issuing licenses to gambling operators and ensuring that they comply with provincial laws and regulations. The government’s involvement in gambling regulation aims to balance the economic benefits of gambling with the need to protect vulnerable individuals from problem gambling. As the gambling industry continues to evolve, it will be important for governments to adapt their regulatory frameworks to ensure that they remain effective and relevant.

Online gambling in Canada today

Online gambling is legal in Canada today and regulated by each province and territory. Each province and territory has its own regulatory body responsible for issuing licenses to online gambling operators and ensuring that they comply with Canadian laws and regulations.

Online casinos offer a wide range of games, including slot machines, table games, and video poker. Many online casinos also offer live dealer games, where players can interact with a live dealer through a video stream. Online sports betting allows players to place bets on a wide range of sports and events, and some online sportsbooks also offer live betting, where players can place bets while the event is in progress. Online poker allows players to compete against each other in poker games and tournaments.

Problem gambling in Canada

Gambling addiction is a serious issue that affects a small percentage of Canadians, but it can have a significant impact on their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Fortunately, there are resources available to help those who need it. Most provinces have problem gambling helplines and offer counseling services to those who need it. Self-exclusion programs are also available, allowing individuals to voluntarily exclude themselves from gambling establishments or online gambling sites. Additionally, some provinces allocate a portion of gambling revenue towards problem gambling research and treatment programs. While problem gambling is a serious issue, these resources can help those affected to seek the help they need and get their lives back on track.

Future of gambling in Canada and how it might evolve in the coming years

The future of gambling in Canada is likely to see a continued expansion of online gambling, as well as the emergence of new technologies and innovations that will change the way people gamble.

One trend that is likely to continue is the rise of online gambling, which has become increasingly popular in recent years. More and more Canadians are turning to online casinos, sportsbooks, and poker sites to satisfy their gambling needs, and this trend is expected to continue. With the legalization of single-event sports betting in Canada, it is likely that even more people will turn to online sports betting.


In conclusion, while the debate on expanding gambling operations in Canada continues, it is clear that there are both potential benefits and drawbacks to such an expansion. The government’s role in regulating gambling at the provincial level has led to a patchwork of regulations, and the prevalence of problem gambling in Canada highlights the need for continued support and resources for those struggling with addiction. As for the economic impact, increased revenue and job creation must be balanced against the potential social costs of gambling, including addiction and crime. Ultimately, it will be up to the government and the public to weigh the potential benefits and drawbacks and determine the future of gambling in Canada.