Public, Society Benefit

Stop Predatory Gambling Foundation

  • Washington, DC
  • www.stoppredatorygambling.org

Mission Statement

Stop Predatory Gambling's mission is to improve the lives of the American people, using education and advocacy to free us of the dishonesty, exploitation, addiction and lower standard of living that commercial gambling spreads.

We believe no taxpayer dollar should be used by government to lure citizens into gambling away their money and becoming slaves to debt; no agency or entity of government should depend on gambling to fund its activities; and no legislature should pass laws to sponsor, promote or subsidize gambling.

Main Programs

  1. An American Declaration on Government and Gambling Initiative
  2. Voices Initiative
  3. Online Education Initiative Initiative
  4. Faith in Action Initiative
  5. Take a Break From Gambling and Bank Your Money Day

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Service Areas

Self-reported

National

We are a national non-profit organization active throughout the United States in all fifty states.

ruling year

1996

Principal Officer

Self-reported

Mr. Les Bernal

Keywords

Self-reported

inequality of opportunity, financial literacy, good government, gambling

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EIN

38-3244246

 Number

6900121830

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Public, Society Benefit - Multipurpose and Other N.E.C. (W99)

Public Health Program (E70)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (R01)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

• SPG's small team of paid staff supports hundreds of citizen leaders and groups running their own affiliated efforts across the United States.

• We intensify the publicity about this issue, providing media interviews and background research to more than 600 international, national and regional journalists since 2010.

• We lead a national litigation movement through our Predatory Gambling Liability Project.

• We operate a website that has become a go-to-source for information about government-sponsored gambling with more than 100,000 unique users.

• We advocate, from testifying before Congress to speaking in your local community.

We take very seriously the responsibility that our supporters entrust in us when they invest time and resources in our organization. Thrift is one of our core organizational values and it is reflected in how we use our resources. More than 85% of all money raised was spent on our program of public education and research in 2011.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

An American Declaration on Government and Gambling Initiative

Purpose is to enlist the support of more than five hundred opinion leaders as well as more than thousands of concerned citizens from across the nation to sign An American Declaration on Government and Gambling.

Category

Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy

Population(s) Served

None

Budget

Program 2

Voices Initiative

When the losers are invisible, the winners are invincible. We are working to strengthen our
capacity to connect with the millions of gambling addicts and their families
across America to help them agitate for change through the web and through
personal contact. Partly because predatory gambling interests fund most of the
gambling addiction treatment in America, the victims and their families have been
pushed into the shadows of our society and they have not spoken out in large
numbers. We will not succeed until this constituency comes forward and puts a
human face on this issue.

Category

Diseases, Disorders & Medical Disciplines

Population(s) Served

Budget

Program 3

Online Education Initiative Initiative

Our online communications effort includes two priorities: first, continuing to develop a dynamic and content-rich SPG website; and second, sharing the latest information about the issue by email, Facebook, Twitter and other media.

Category

Public, Society Benefit

Population(s) Served

None

Budget

Program 4

Faith in Action Initiative

We are working to better develop the large and diverse communities of faith who already oppose predatory gambling by establishing study groups in hundreds, and ultimately thousands, of churches, temples and mosques all over the nation.

Category

Religion

Population(s) Served

None

Budget

Program 5

Take a Break From Gambling and Bank Your Money Day

The purpose of this day has three goals:

1) To educate people on the truth that financial security occurs most often from the act of regularly saving small sums of money over the long-term.

2) Offer an opportunity for gambling operators to acknowledge they have a duty of care to citizens. We do this by inviting any store, restaurant or casino operator across the US that sells lottery tickets or offers electronic gambling machines to stop doing it for one day on Sept. 29th. Turn off the gambling machines just for one day. Stop selling scratch tickets for one day.

3) To offer family members and friends a way to start a conversation about gambling with the people they love. We do this by inviting any citizen who participates in state-sponsored gambling to stop gambling for one day on Sept. 29th. If you have a loved one or a good friend who is an active gambler, urge them to participate and be their sponsor for Sept. 29th. As a sponsor, your role is to help the person stay away from gambling, be supportive and help them pursue other activities.

The event has grown out of the work of SPG members Ronda Hatefi and her organization Oregonians for Problem Gambling Awareness. Ronda's brother Bobby Hafemann took his life because he became addicted to electronic gambling machines pushed by his own state government.

Category

Public, Society Benefit

Population(s) Served

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Stop Predatory Gambling's mission is to improve the lives of the American people, using education and advocacy to free us of the dishonesty, exploitation, addiction and lower standard of living that commercial gambling spreads.

    We believe no taxpayer dollar should be used by government to lure citizens into gambling away their money and becoming slaves to debt; no agency or entity of government should depend on gambling to fund its activities; and no legislature should pass laws to sponsor, promote or subsidize gambling.

    We will achieve this goal by:

    1. Increasing the amount and success of well-founded lawsuits filed against commercial gambling operators and their vendors.

    2. Reducing the amount of advertising and marketing done by gambling interests.

    3. Establishing a broadly understood, fact-based, and respected public argument among both elite opinion leaders and everyday citizens.

    4. Increasing the amount of publicity about the failures and practices of government-sponsored gambling in all mediums, with a special emphasis on how this policy severely hurts the nation's children.

    5. Confronting the gambling addiction researchers, the treatment providers and many in the nation's public health community who have been complicit about the practices used by gambling operators and the government officials they partner with.

    6. Increasing and activating the proportion of Americans who support phasing out this public policy, especially those who have personally experienced its harm.

    7. Increasing the number of public officials at all levels of government who support phasing out government's promotion and sponsorship of gambling.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    We will gladly discuss our strategies in person. Please contact us at (202) 567-6696 or email us at mail@stoppredatorygambling.org.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    SPG is a national, transpartisan, government reform network of individuals, family members and organizations from diverse backgrounds, political convictions and religious faiths. We are America's only national organization with a mission dedicated to predatory gambling.

    Our network of individuals and organizations includes more than one million Americans nationwide. We have established a powerful, effective message that resonates with citizens from all areas of society. We have also demonstrated the kind of resilient, "burn the boats" attitude that underlies all successful social reform movements.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    We have several indicators of progress:

    1) The quality and number of lawsuits filed against predatory gambling operators and their suppliers;

    2) Whether the amount of advertising and marketing done by gambling interests is decreasing;

    3) The amount and intensity of publicity about the failures and practices of government-sponsored gambling in all mediums;

    4) Whether gambling addiction researchers, the treatment providers and many in the nation's public health community are speaking out against commercial gambling operators and moving away from their current reliance on funding from the industry;

    5) The number of Americans who support phasing out this public policy is increasing, especially those who have personally experienced its harm.

    6) The number of public officials at all levels of government who support phasing out government's promotion and sponsorship of gambling is increasing.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    We achieved a powerful, effective message; relationships with leaders in all 50 states; and a steady organizational base. We have not achieved a repeal of government sponsored gambling in a major state yet although we have come close.
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

We are a national non-profit organization active throughout the United States in all fifty states.

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Financials

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Stop Predatory Gambling Foundation

Leadership

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Principal Officer

Mr. Les Bernal

BIO

Les has been National Director since 2008 when the network grew into the organization of Stop Predatory Gambling.

Les has spoken and written extensively about online gambling, regional casinos and state lotteries, all of which are being promoted by government to citizens. He has testified before Congress, he has appeared on national television and radio including 60 Minutes, CNN, Fox News Channel, MSNBC, National Public Radio and The BBC. He has been cited by more than 600 newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Economist, USA Today, and Sports Illustrated. He has also spoken before more than 1000 business organizations, college audiences and faith groups across the nation.

In 2015, the national edition of The Deseret News named Les as "one of its seven heroes who made a difference in America this year."

Prior to joining the national movement, Les served as a Chief of Staff in the Massachusetts State Senate and worked as a campaign strategist for more than forty federal and state campaigns. He is also a former college and high school basketball coach, founder of the Robert Frost Foundation in Lawrence, Massachusetts- the hometown of America's favorite poet – and a past chairman of the city's Planning Board. He is a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church in Lawrence.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Dr. Guy Clark

Stop Predatory Gambling New Mexico

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


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CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


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ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


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BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?