NAACP, anti-gambling expert speak out against sports betting in Ohio


(WKBN) – Opposition to the Senate-passed sports betting bill continues to grow as the House is scheduled to return from its summer recess next month.

Two influential opponents to the measure delivered remarks Tuesday. You can watch the entire press conference in the player above.

Tom Roberts, president of the Ohio Conference of the NAACP, and Les Bernal, executive director of Stop Predatory Gambling, spoke about the impacts of sports betting on communities of color, calling it a predatory practice.

Roberts said that anyone can bet on a sporting event right now and that passing the sports betting bill is not necessary.

Bernal said that sports betting parlors disproportionately impact communities of color and distressed areas.

In June, the Ohio Senate approved legislation legalizing sports betting in the state.

The bill would allow betting at casinos, betting shops, sports bars, computers, mobile phones and pro sports stadiums. It also allows for electronic bingo at veteran’s and fraternal organizations overseen by the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and sports pool betting run by the Ohio Lottery Commission.

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