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PNS Daily Newscast - April 20, 2018 


The DOJ delivers the Comey memos to Congress. Also on our rundown: More evidence that rent prices are out of reach in many markets; Wisconsin counties brace for sulfide mining; and the Earth Day focus this weekend in North Dakota is on recycling.

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Montana Problem Gamblers Can Bet on Free Help Close to Home

March 12, 2008

Billings, MT – Free help is a "sure bet" in Montana for those with gambling problems. It's "National Problem Gamblers Awareness Week," a time to encourage those who are worried about their wagering, and their families, to ask for help.
But how do you know when you've crossed the line into gambling addiction? Donna Johnson, with the Montana Council on Problem Gambling, offers some clues.

"When you start to take money away from your household, take time away from your work, start to get all muddled and moving money around – that's more of a problem."

Johnson explains the dark side of gambling addictions include debt, embarrassment and sometimes, domestic violence. A National Research Council study found up to one-half of the spouses of problem gamblers have been abused. She adds there are plenty of free resources for those who seek help. The counseling typically includes exploring underlying issues, such as depression and boredom.

"People want to be heroes. They think, 'Well, if I could win all this money, I could give it to my kids; we could go on a trip.'"

Johnson notes there is a bright side - close to 80 percent of those who complete a counseling program remain "gamble-free," two years later. She adds, while most people can gamble responsibly, about two percent develop a problem.

Help can start with Montana's toll-free gambling hotline, at 1-888-552-9076. More information about gambling and domestic violence can be found online, www.ncpgambling.org.

Deborah Smith/Don Mathisen, Public News Service - MT