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Table 1 A taxonomy of harms experienced by people who gamble

From: Understanding gambling related harm: a proposed definition, conceptual framework, and taxonomy of harms

  General Crisis Legacy
Financial Harm • Reduction or loss of capacity to purchase luxury items such as holidays, electronics
• Reduction or loss of discretionary spending such as non-gambling related entertainment or other family members’ activities (ie. children’s sports)
• Erosion of savings
• Activities to manage short term cash-flow issues:
o Additional employment or other forms of income generation
o Accessing more credit
o Use of credit cards (kite flying)
o Selling or pawning items
o Pay day loans
o Non-payment or juggling of large bills such as utilities or rates
• Cost of replacing items sold or pawned as part of short term cash strategies
• Reduction or loss of non-immediate consequence expenditure
o Insurance (health, home, car, income protection, business)
o Repairs or maintenance costs (home, car, business)
o Health promotion activities (check-ups, long term medications, allied health support)
o Household items
• Reduction or loss of expenditure on items of immediate consequence:
o Children’s expenses (education)
o Medication or health care
o Clothing
o Food (including use of food parcel)
o Housing or accommodation
o Needing assistance with bill payments from welfare organisations or inability to pay bills (eg utilities)
o Transport costs (petrol, fares)
• Loss of sources of additional funds (ie no further credit available)
• Loss of capacity to meet requirements of essential needs (food)
• Loss of normal accommodation requiring temporary accommodation or resulting in homelessness
• Loss of major assets (car, home, business)
• Bankruptcy
• Reliant on welfare
• Restrictions due to bankruptcy or credit rating
• Ongoing financial hardship
• “Forced” cohabitation or involvement in unhealthy relationship due to financial constraint
• Further financial harm from attempts to manage debt (ie. Non-reputable finance providers for debt consolidation)
• Ongoing issues relating to financial security, poverty, or financial disadvantage.
• Higher costs associated with poor credit rating including premium cost of pay as you go services or increased security bonds.
Relationship Disruption, Conflict or Breakdown • Dishonest communication within relationships with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Unreliable or unavailable to spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Reduced amount of time spent with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Reduced quality of time spent with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Disengagement or withdrawal from relationship responsibilities.
• Increased levels of neglect of relationships
• Pervasive neglect or disengagement from relationships
• Reduced engagement in family or social events,
• Tension with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Minor or occasional conflict due to increased involvement in gambling or suspicion of increased involvement with gambling
• Serious or regular conflict due to increased involvement in gambling or suspicion of increased involvement with gambling
• Major or constant conflict due to increased involvement in gambling or suspicion of increased involvement with gambling
• Loss of trust from relationship with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• “Punishment” by spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Episodic distortion of relationship roles (infantilising the person gambling, others including children having to take parental type role)
• Incidence or escalation of family violence or intimate partner violence
• Threat of separation or rejection from relationship with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Actual separation or rejection from relationship with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Social isolation
• Loss of relationship (temporary or permanent) with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Distortion of relationship roles (infantilising the person gambling, others including children having to take parental type role)
• Incidence or escalation of family violence or intimate partner violence
• Social isolation due to ongoing estrangement from relationships with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Vulnerability to problematic gambling relapse due to isolation or relationship breakdown
• Inability or reluctance to participate in social functions at gambling venues
• Ongoing “punishment” or resentment from spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Relationship rebuilding or reconciliation
• Ongoing involvement of family court in parenting or co-parenting
• Long term damage or estrangement from relationship/s with spouse, partner, children, family, friends or community
• Ongoing distortion of relationship roles (infantilising the person gambling, others including children having to take parental type role)
• Loss of psychological development through lack of appropriate social interaction
• Incidence or escalation of family violence or intimate partner violence
Emotional or Psychological Distress • Emotional and psychological distress caused by living outside of your value system
• Experience of distorted cognitions or erroneous beliefs
• Emotional or psychological distress of hiding gambling from others (including lying and creating alibis for lost time and money)
• Reduced feelings of self-worth and pride
• Increased feelings of shame
• Increased feelings of inadequacy or personal failing because of inability to control gambling to recreational levels
• Perceptions of being stigmatised
• Emotional or psychological distress of inability to control gambling
• Increased feelings of insecurity and vulnerability
• Emotional or psychological distress caused by other harms
• Emotional or psychological distress due to harm caused to others (guilt)
• Loss of “face” or reputation due to impact of other harms
• Desperation from not being able to recoup losses.
• Emotional or psychological distress of not wanting to accept problems with gambling
• Loss of sense of future or ability to get ahead
• Increasing feelings of powerlessness
• Fear and distress from follow up and harassment by creditors (legal and illegal)
• Extreme emotional or psychological distress in relation to other harms
• Extreme emotional or psychological distress due to harm caused to others
• Extreme emotional or psychological distress caused by living outside of your value system
• Complete loss of feelings of self-worth and pride
• Extreme shame
• Extreme sense of hopelessness and powerlessness
• Suicidal ideation
• Loss of “face” or reputation (stigma) if problem with gambling becomes publicly known
• Shame from utilising responsible gambling measures such as exclusion or seeking treatment.
• Extreme fear and distress from follow up and harassment by creditors (legal and illegal)
• Experienced, perceived and internal stigma
• Ongoing guilt and shame
• Emotional and psychological impacts of managing recovery or harm minimisation strategies including constant vigilance and behavioural adaptation
• Ongoing feelings of insecurity and vulnerability
• Ongoing emotional and psychological distress in relation to other harms
• Ongoing emotional or psychological distress due to harm caused to others
• Ongoing emotional or psychological distress caused by having lived outside of your value system
• Ongoing vulnerability to suicidal behaviours
Decrements to Health • Increased sedentary behaviour during time spent gambling
• Biological manifestation of emotional and psychological distress eg. increased blood pressure, loss of sleep
• Reduced levels of self-care:
o nutrition
o hygiene
o sufficient sleep
o compliance with medical care
o physical activity
o reduced quality of living circumstances (ie. cannot afford heating)
• Incidence of disease or injury due to reduced levels of self care
• Increased risk due to gateway effect, interaction with, or exacerbation of other health risk factors (drinking, smoking, illegal substances)
• Increased risk due to gateway to, interaction with, or exacerbation of comorbidities (depression, anxiety, biophysical chronic disease)
• Increased experience of family violence due to involvement in gambling
• Incidence of self-harm
• Minor health ailments (headache migraine) relating to focussing on a screen for long periods of time with particular gambling products
• Physical impacts of living rough due to homelessness, including increased risk of disease, violence and impact of poor living conditions
• Experience of violence due to involvement in gambling
• Medical emergency (including mortality) due to onset, exacerbation, or failure to diagnose condition due to gambling
• Serious self-harm
• Attempted (or completed) suicide
• Ongoing disability or decrement to health through attempted suicide or other forms of self-harm
• Ongoing increased risk of disease or decrement to health due to legacy effects of risk factors or poor self-care
• Ongoing disability or decrement to health due to other medical conditions exacerbated or advanced due to involvement with gambling.
Cultural Harm • Reduced engagement in cultural rituals
• Culturally based shame in relation to cultural roles and expectations
• Reduction of contribution to community and cultural practices of the community
• Reduction of cultural practices
• Reduced connection to cultural community
• Harm to individual through reduced connection to community and culture in terms of increased social exclusion or isolation
• Extreme cultural shame in relation to culturally based roles and expectations
• Loss of ability to contribute to community
• Impact (loss) on cultural practices
• Damaged or lost connection to community and culture
• Harm to individual through reduced or lost connection to community
• Ongoing cultural shame in relation to roles and expectations
• Ongoing reduction or loss of contribution to community
• Ongoing reduction or loss of cultural practices
• Ongoing loss of connection to community
• Ongoing harm to individual through reduced connection to community
Reduced Performance at Work or Study • Reduced performance due to tiredness or distraction
• Increased absenteeism due to time spent actually gambling, tiredness, ill health or lack of transport due to gambling
• Workplace or educational institution consequences of use of work or educational institution resources for gambling activity
• Reduced availability to contribute to the community through volunteer work
• Loss of job due to theft or fraud involving employment or educational institution
• Loss of job, suspension or exclusion from educational institution due to poor performance
• Exacerbation or contribution to other harms due to job loss (including loss of wage)
• Rejection from volunteer work
• Reduced opportunity for employment or enrolment due to past poor performance or criminal activity
• Ongoing impact in participation in volunteer work (linked to reputation and restriction of activities)
Criminal Activity • Vulnerability to illegal activities that can provide fast access to funds
• Engagement in crimes of negligence - acts such as child neglect (leaving children unsupervised)
• Engagement in crimes of opportunity - petty theft including from family members
• Engagement in crimes of opportunity - property crimes for funds, illicit lending, fraudulent efforts to attain funds
• Engagement in crimes of duress - relating to repaying debt such as drug trafficking and prostitution
• Arrest and/or conviction of criminal activity of opportunity
• Arrest and/or conviction of criminal activity of duress
• Arrest and / or conviction of criminal activity of negligence
• Impact of criminal record on future employment opportunities, voluntary and community opportunities, travel restrictions
• Disruption to relationships of custodial sentence
• Ongoing impact on spouse, partner, child, family and friends due to impact of criminal record or custodial sentence through other mechanisms
• Trans-generational impact of criminal record or custodial sentence
• Shame and stigma of criminal conviction or involvement in criminal activity
Lifecourse and Intergenerational Harms
• Generational loss relating to financial security or stages of financial achievement (ongoing impact caused by inability to secure or loss of major asset, superannuation)
• Loss of lifecourse events such as engagement/marriage/having children (generational loss)
• Loss of primary relationships and social connection (including parents/children/community)
• Having to move towns/states due to impact of gambling or other harms
• Homelessness
• Change to career due to impact of gambling or other harms
• Incarceration due to gambling