NATIONAL COUNCIL ON PROBLEM GAMBLING
153. In this Part, unless the context otherwise requires —
“application” means an application for a family exclusion order;
“chairman” means the chairman of the Council;
“Committee” means any Committee of Assessors for the time being constituted under section 157(1);
“exclusion order” means an exclusion order made under section 165;
“family exclusion order” means a family exclusion order made under section 162;
“family member”, in relation to a respondent, means —
a spouse of the respondent;
a child of the respondent, including an adopted child and a step-child;
a parent of the respondent, including an adoptive parent and a step-parent; and
a sibling of the respondent, including an adoptive sibling, a step-sibling and a half-sibling;
“Minister” means the Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports;
“panel” means the panel of assessors appointed under section 157(2);
“respondent” means a person against whom a family exclusion order or exclusion order is sought or made.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 3]
—(1) There shall be a National Council on Problem Gambling comprising a chairman and not less than 7 and not more than 19 other members to be appointed by the Minister.
(2) The chairman and every member of the Council shall be appointed for a period not exceeding 2 years and shall be eligible for reappointment.
(3) The Minister may, at any time, revoke the appointment of the chairman or any member of the Council and may appoint any person to fill any vacancy which may arise in the Council for any reason whatsoever.
[Maint. Religious Harmony Act, s. 3]
—(1) The functions of the Council shall be —
to do all the things it is authorised or required to do under this Part; and
to appoint a panel of assessors to decide on applications for the exclusion of persons from casino premises.
(2) The Council may appoint a secretary to the Council and such other officers as may be required to enable the Council to carry out its functions under this Part.
(3) Every summons and notice issued under the hand of the secretary to the Council to any person shall be deemed to be issued by the Council.
(4) The Council may, subject to the provisions of this Part, regulate its own procedure.
(5) The Council shall not transact any business unless a quorum of not less than half of its members, including the chairman or member presiding, is present.
(6) The chairman, if present, shall preside at all meetings of the Council.
(7) Where the office of chairman is vacant or the chairman for any reason is unable to attend a meeting, such other member as the members present shall elect shall preside at the meeting.
[Maint. Religious Harmony Act, s. 4]
—(1) The Council may, subject to section 155(5), transact its business notwithstanding any vacancy among its members.
(2) The proceedings or any decision of the Council shall be valid notwithstanding any defect in the appointment of its members or that some person who was not entitled to do so took part in its proceedings.
[Maint. Religious Harmony Act, s. 5]
—(1) For the purpose of hearing and determining an application for a family exclusion order under section 158 or of making an exclusion order under section 165, the chairman of the Council shall, from time to time, constitute a Committee of Assessors consisting of —
a chairman, being a member of the Council; and
2 other members selected from the panel of assessors appointed under subsection (2).
(2) For the purpose of enabling a Committee to be constituted under subsection (1), there shall be a panel of assessors, the members of which shall be appointed by the Council.
(3) The panel shall consist of such number of persons as the Council may determine.
(4) A person appointed to the panel shall, unless his appointment is revoked by the Council under subsection (6) or he resigns, be a member of the panel for a period of 2 years or for such shorter period as the Council may in any case determine, but shall be eligible for reappointment.
(5) Where a person ceases to be a member of the panel, the Council shall, as soon as is reasonably practicable, take steps to fill the vacancy in the Committee of which he is a member, but the existence of any vacancy in the Committee shall not invalidate the acts of the Committee.
(6) The Council may at any time revoke the appointment of a member of the panel.
(7) There shall be paid to the members of the panel such salaries, fees and allowances as the Council may determine.
[Land Acquisition Act, s. 26]
—(1) A Committee shall hear and determine in accordance with this Part all applications for family exclusion orders referred to the Committee under section 159(2).
(2) Sittings of a Committee shall be held at such places and times as the chairman of the Committee may determine.
(3) No party to any proceedings before a Committee may be represented by an advocate and solicitor except that the person making the application on behalf of an applicant under section 160 or 161 may represent the applicant before a Committee although he may be an advocate and solicitor.
(4) A Committee shall have the power to —
summon any person whom it may consider able to give evidence to attend at the hearing of an application; and
examine such person as a witness and to require such person to produce such records, documents or articles as the Committee may think necessary for the purposes of the proceedings.
(5) Every person examined as a witness by or before a Committee shall, notwithstanding any written law or rule of law relating to the confidentiality of medical information or any rule of practice relating to client confidentiality, be legally bound to state the truth and to produce such records, documents or articles as the Committee may require for the purposes of carrying out its functions and duties under this Part.
(6) In proceedings under this Part, a Committee is to decide questions of fact on the balance of probabilities.
(7) A Committee shall not be bound by the strict rules of evidence and shall determine the conduct of its proceedings.
(8) At any meeting of a Committee under this Part —
all 3 members of the Committee shall be personally present to constitute a quorum; and
any question arising at the meeting of the Committee shall be determined by a majority of votes of the members present and, in the case of an equality of votes, the chairman of the Committee shall have a casting vote.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 11]
—(1) An application for a family exclusion order may be made by —
a family member of the respondent adversely affected by the respondent’s gambling; or
(2) An application shall be made to the Council in writing in the form approved by the Council, and the Council shall refer the application to a Committee.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 7]
160. An application that could otherwise be made by a person under this Part may, if the person is below the age of 21 years, be made —
by the person, with the permission of the Council, if the person is at least 16 years of age; or
on behalf of the person by —
a parent or guardian of the person; or
with the permission of the Council, any other family member or other relative of the person.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 8]
161. Where a person is unable to make an application (whether by reason of physical or mental infirmity or for any other reason), the application may be made on his behalf —
with the permission of the Council, by any family member or other relative of the person; or
by any person appointed by the Minister.
[Maint. Parents Act, s. 11]
—(1) On an application referred to a Committee under section 159(2), the Committee may make a family exclusion order against a respondent if —
there is a reasonable apprehension that the respondent may cause serious harm to family members because of his gambling;
the Committee is satisfied that the making of the order is appropriate in the circumstances;
the respondent has been given an opportunity to object to the application; and
the Committee is satisfied that it would be in the best interests of the respondent and his family members to make the order.
(2) For the purposes of this Part, a respondent is to be regarded as having caused serious harm to family members because of his gambling if the respondent —
has engaged in gambling activities irresponsibly having regard to the needs and welfare of the respondent’s family members; and
has done so repeatedly over a period of not less than 3 months or in a particularly irresponsible manner over a lesser period.
(3) A Committee may decide that there is a reasonable apprehension that a respondent may cause serious harm to family members because of his gambling if the Committee is satisfied that —
the respondent has caused such harm prior to the complaint, according to the test set out in subsection (2); and
there is reason to believe that the respondent’s irresponsible gambling behaviour will continue or recur.
(4) A Committee may, in determining whether there is a reasonable apprehension that a respondent may cause serious harm to family members because of his gambling, take into account events that have taken place outside Singapore.
(5) If a respondent disputes some or all of the grounds on which a family exclusion order is sought or made but consents to the order, a Committee may make or confirm the order without receiving any further submissions or evidence as to the grounds.
(6) A Committee may, at any stage, dismiss an application if the Committee is satisfied that the application is frivolous, vexatious, without substance or has no reasonable prospect of success.
(7) A Committee shall report to the Council its decision on every application referred to the Committee accordingly and briefly state the reasons for its decision.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 4]
—(1) A family exclusion order —
shall specify the period during which it is in force; and
may apply for the benefit of all of the respondent’s family members or specified family members.
(2) Without limiting the matters that may be the subject of a family exclusion order, an order may do one or more of the following:
refer the respondent to participate in a program of counselling, rehabilitation or special education or any combination of these;
bar the respondent from entering or remaining, or taking part in any gaming on any casino premises;
require the respondent to close any deposit account in a casino;
require a casino operator to close any deposit account of the respondent with the casino.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 5]
—(1) A family exclusion order may be made in the absence of the respondent if the respondent was required by summons to appear at the hearing of the application and failed to appear at the time and place appointed for the purpose.
(2) A Committee may from time to time, without requiring the attendance of any party, adjourn the hearing to which a respondent is summoned to a later date if satisfied that the summons has not been served or that there is other adequate reason for the adjournment.
(3) The date fixed in the first instance for the hearing to which the respondent is summoned must be within 28 days of the date of the application.
(4) The date fixed for an adjourned hearing must be within 28 days of the date on which the adjournment is ordered unless the Committee is satisfied that —
a later date is required to enable the summons to be served; or
there is other adequate reason for fixing a later date.
(5) An order made under this section —
continues in force until the conclusion of the hearing to which the respondent is summoned or, if the hearing is adjourned, until the conclusion of the adjourned hearing; but
will not be effective after the conclusion of the hearing to which the respondent is summoned or the adjourned hearing unless the Committee confirms the order —
on the failure of the respondent to appear at the hearing in obedience to the summons;
having considered any evidence given by or on behalf of the respondent; or
with the consent of the respondent.
(6) A Committee may confirm a family exclusion order in an amended form.
(7) If a hearing is adjourned, the Committee at the adjourned hearing need not be constituted of the same members as constituted the Committee when it ordered the adjournment.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 9]
—(1) A Committee may, on its own motion, by written order make an exclusion order against a person if it comes to the attention of the Committee that the person —
is on any social assistance programme funded by the Government or any statutory body;
has a bankruptcy application filed against him or is an undischarged bankrupt; or
has a poor credit record.
(2) A Committee may give a written exclusion order under this section to a person on the voluntary application of the person.
(3) Before a Committee makes an exclusion order against any person under subsection (1), the Committee shall give the person a reasonable opportunity to object to the proposed order.
(4) An exclusion order made under subsection (1) or (2) shall bar the person named in the order from entering or remaining on any casino premises for as long as the person satisfies subsection (1)(a), (b) or (c) or for such other period as may be specified in the order.
(5) A Committee may, at any time, revoke an exclusion order made under subsection (1) or (2) against a person if, having regard to all the circumstances of the case, the Committee is of the opinion that an exclusion order would no longer be in the best interests of the person and his family members.
(6) A person who is aggrieved by an exclusion order made against him by a Committee under subsection (1) may, within 30 days of being notified of the decision of the Committee, appeal to the Council whose decision shall be final.
—(1) The Council may confirm, vary or revoke a family exclusion order or an exclusion order on application by —
a family member for whose benefit the order was made; or
(2) An application for variation or revocation of an order under subsection (1) may be made by the respondent only with the permission of the Council and permission is only to be granted if the Council is satisfied that there has been a substantial change in the relevant circumstances since the order was made or last varied.
(3) The Council shall, before confirming, varying or revoking an order under this section, allow the respondent and, in the case of a family exclusion order, a family member for whose benefit the order was made, a reasonable opportunity to be heard on the matter.
(4) The decision of the Council under this section shall be final.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 10]
—(1) A family exclusion order or an exclusion order made by a Committee must be served on the respondent and is not binding on the person named in the order until it has been so served.
(2) If a family exclusion order or an exclusion order is confirmed in an amended form or is varied at any time, the order in its amended or varied form must be served on the respondent and until so served —
the variation is not binding on the respondent; and
the order as in force prior to the variation continues to be binding on the respondent.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 12]
168. A copy of every family exclusion order or exclusion order, and a copy of every variation or revocation of such order must be provided by the Council to —
the applicant, if any;
the Commissioner of Police; and
every casino operator.
[SA Problem Gambling 2004, s. 13]
—(1) Except as provided under section 168 and this section, the proceedings of a Committee shall be secret.
(2) No member of a Committee shall disclose or divulge to any person, other than —
any member or officer of the Council; or
any officer of the Authority,
any matter which has arisen at any proceedings of the Committee unless he is expressly authorised to do so by the Minister.
[Maint. Religious Harmony Act, s. 7]
—(1) The Council may, with the approval of the Minister, make such rules as may be necessary or expedient to give effect to the provisions and purposes of this Part and for the due administration thereof.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the Council may, with the approval of the Minister, make rules to prescribe —
the procedure for the conduct of any proceedings by the Council;
the procedure for the conduct of any proceedings by a Committee;
the forms necessary for the administration of this Part; and
any fees for an application and other charges for the purposes of this Part.