A slightly shabby prewar slice of suburbia, with bay windows and a side door, it does not stand out in a nondescript street a few minutes from the Tottenham Hotspur football ground. You would walk past without taking a second look. Which is exactly what the locals did. Of the 12 inhabitants of nearby houses to whom I spoke, only one, a Polish man, had noticed the family living at the end of the street.
Larger text size Very large text size It is the way of such matters. Widespread public disquiet over a troubling phenomenon is one thing. The fate of battler builder Gary Van Duinen six weeks ago is a case in point. Loading Hundreds of thousands of dollars disappeared down these gambling gurglers of hell, until there was just about nothing left.
But perhaps, his luck might change, with one last big go? Starting before midday last May 31, for the next 13 hours, Mr Van Duinen put the last shred of his finances, his last remaining credit, and even deposits for coming building jobs, through the pokies of three clubs — the last of which was his regular haunt, the Dee Why RSL.
Early the next morning, he was done. He left the club for the last time shortly before 2am. The last person to see him alive was a cab driver who dropped him near a patch of suburban bushland near Narrabeen Lakes sometime after 5am on Friday, June 1. His body was found by a search and rescue team six days later.
Or anyone with a soul does anyway. And of course, in the face of it, we get carefully calibrated language from Dee Why RSL noting how powerless it is to know how much a patron can afford to lose, how it legally cannot intervene on the request of a family member to stop someone playing, as it has to come from the person themselves, and so forth, and so on.
I say if the industry will not act, then we the people, must. Let us, as a community look at the fate of Van Duinen and his family, move on from carefully calibrated language designed to clam and smooth things over, and call this for what it is: Gary Van Duinen died by suicide.
And what did it give back? The ALP will only applaud. Loading On Friday, Opposition Leader, Luke Foley promised that if elected, Labor would introduce legislation so that family members like Sonia Van Duinen could apply for exclusion orders, to have loved ones banned from gambling venues.
That would be a start. But what of making a real election issue of it? What of going in with a policy of reducing poker machines, banning outright any move to encourage losing gamblers to lose more, get ATM machines the hell out of clubs, insist clubs give a fair shake back to the communities they have sucked so much out of?
Foley has been bold in some of his policy moves so far. Beyond all legislative moves, could we all, meantime, perhaps try base-level human decency?
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|Chicago Tribune - We are currently unavailable in your region||While I hope to work with the editor for a future re-write, here is the original piece for your reading: How about Secularists for Sharia Law?|
|Panache Report Myra Panache Reports Tragic Stories||Published 26 October Department for Education and The Rt Hon Michael Gove MP This was published under the to Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government The Government is today fulfilling its commitment to publish the two Serious Case Review SCR overview reports into the tragic death of Peter Connelly, in order to restore public confidence and improve transparency in the child protection system.|
|REFERENCES||In November, Connelly's new boyfriend, Steven Barker, moved in with her.|
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