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Problem Gamblers and Their Families Can Now Get Help via Text 

Date: 1/14/2015 
Number: 15-006 
Contact: Anita Gore (916) 440-7259 

SACRAMENTO  Help for problem gambling is just a text message away, thanks to new text support-services from the California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) Office of Problem Gambling and the California Council on Problem Gambling. 

Now, 24-hours a day, you can text SUPPORT to 53342 and receive help for problem gambling at no cost (normal text messaging fees apply). This text-messaging service is in addition to the 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) hotline. 

By calling or texting the helpline, gamblers and their affected family members can receive referrals to services provided as part of California Gambling Education and Treatment Services (CalGETS). CalGETS includes: text support, telephone counseling, one-on-one outpatient counseling for gamblers and affected family members, and intensive outpatient counseling and residential care for gamblers in need of a higher level of treatment service. In addition to CalGETS, the helpline also provides information about Gamblers Anonymous and Gam-Anon: 12-step programs for problem gamblers and affected family members. 

Also starting in early 2015, “Don’t Ignore the Signs”, a new problem-gambling awareness campaign featuring ads and public service announcements, will highlight the signs of problem gambling, such as debt, depression, lies, shame, guilt, anxiety and a feeling of hopelessness. Additional treatment options for gamblers and their families are available through the CDPH website, including problem gambling self-help workbooks, Freedom from Problem Gambling, in 21 languages. 

The Office of Problem Gambling is funded by the Indian Gaming Special Distribution Fund, the California Lottery and California cardrooms.
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