On 2 March 2016, amendments were made to the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation Act 2011, including a new advocacy and policy role for the Foundation.
The amending legislation, the Gambling Legislation Amendment Bill 2015, also allowed the Foundation to charge fees on a cost recovery basis in limited circumstances for some of its education and training services.
During her second reading speech in the Victorian Parliament in September 2015, Jane Garrett, the then Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation, spoke of the Foundation's new advocacy and policy role.
She spoke of the Foundation's significant role in supporting Victorians affected by problem gambling and fostering greater understanding and awareness of responsible gambling in the wider community. In particular, she noted the Foundation works within a public health framework to build the resilience of Victorians to problem gambling and achieves this through undertaking community education and awareness-raising activities to foster responsible gambling and promote problem gambling help services, and undertaking research to inform best practice in problem gambling treatment and prevention and responsible gambling communication.
The then Minister stated she saw a considerable opportunity for the Foundation to draw on its relationships with government, industry, health professionals and community groups to provide her with informed advice to address problem gambling in Victoria. She further stated that providing the Foundation with a legislated advocacy and policy role would supplement the policy advice the minister receives from other bodies such as the Responsible Gambling Ministerial Advisory Council and the Department of Justice and Regulation, and would support the government's decision-making in relation to responsible gambling policy.