Single-event sports gambling bill advances in Canada
By Bob Garcia
After a few false starts, Canada might be closing in on single-event sports wagers
With all the attention given sports gambling in the US, it’s only logical that some of that would spill over into Canada. However, the northern neighbor has repeatedly found ways to avoid the subject, especially single-event sports gambling. That might now be changing, though, as a bill addressing the activity is now going to be introduced to the House of Commons.
The Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act (Bill C-218) would give Canada the ability and mechanisms necessary to offer legal sports gambling. At a time when governments need to attract revenue from any possible source because of COVID-19, the global pandemic has turned into a catalyst for continued efforts to legalize sports gambling. In Canada’s case, it has the potential to generate as much as $4 billion in revenue, which would bring huge benefits to the country.
It’s been a long time coming and, just a couple of months ago, it seemed as though single-event sports wagers in Canada would never appear. C-218 could change that, and the Canadian Gaming Association is happy to see the bill come to life. It said in a statement that it is “pleased that the federal government has recognised the urgent need to amend the Criminal Code to offer safeguards to Canadians as well as an economic recovery tool for the provinces,” adding, “We can’t emphasize enough how this small change to the Criminal Code will help communities recover from the economic devastations of the COVID-19 shutdown.”