Nipawin - Friday, October 5, 2001 - by: Mario deSantis


I have been always leery about the concerted effort by former Premier Romanow and Native leaders to bolster the economic development of Natives through the establishment of Native casinos. We have in Saskatchewan the highest proportion of Native inmates in our prisons while at the same time we experience the highest crime rate of any other province.




As a consequence, I have been always against the growth of the casino industry in Saskatchewan. The lure of making easy money for both the government and native groups has subtly backfired and the province has now a poorer Native population, a greedier Native leadership and one of the worst educational and health care infrastructures in the country.




It is mind boggling to realize that some lobbyists are proposing still more casinos for the province.




Finally, we have a comprehensive economic study of the impact of costs and benefits associated with the introduction of gambling casinos in a community. This study was conducted by Earl Grinols of the University of Illinois and by David Mustard of the University of Georgia. They found that the costs outstripped the gains almost twofold and they confirmed that gambling casinos are directly responsible for higher crime rates as well.




Therefore, it would be better off for our government to stop the gimmick to use casino profits to help our children and charitable organizations, and instead implement policies where continuous learning replaces continuous gambling.
------------Some References:
  Relevant related article at Ensign
  Casinos More Often Lead to Losses than to Economic Development, Scientific American,