Metro State University launches new course to tackle shortage of problem gambling counselors

Metro State University campus
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The rise of online betting in the U.S. is accelerating the issue of problem gambling to the point where there are not enough counselors to deal with the problem. 

As a result of this, Metro State University in Minnesota has created a new course that will aim to tackle the problem by instructing future counselors on how to treat problem gambling.

In the state 250,000 people report having problems with gambling yet there are only 19 licensed therapists in the state who are certified to treat the issue.

“It’s a problem that gets exponentially bigger every year, and we need to have the resources and the trained counselors to address this issue,” said course leader Craig Johnson, speaking to FOX 9. “I have almost 30 patients that I see, and I would say about a quarter of them are struggling with sports wagering.”

Johnson explained that the first-of-its-kind class will teach the psychological and physiological aspects of gambling on the body, as well as the impact on families and finances.

Renewed efforts to legalize sports betting in Minnesota

Minnesota is once again considering a bill that would legalize online sports betting in the state. SF1949 would allow 11 tribes in the state to work with professional sports teams to offer retail and online sports betting.

The bill is currently on a committee tour and has already experienced a number of amendments. The biggest of these amendments is that in-game betting would be banned, which Sports Betting Alliance President Jeremy Kudon says will effectively prohibit more than half of wagering at regulated sites.