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The National Council on Problem Gambling was founded in 1972 by Msgr. Joseph A. Dunne and Dr. Robert Custer, among others. From the outset the Council established two principles that it continues to espouse today: that the organization would be the advocate for problem gamblers and their families, and that it would maintain a neutral stance regarding the legalization of gambling.
Unlike other national organizations (notably, the National Center for Responsible Gaming), the NCPG is not dependent on funding from the industry, has a wholly independent board with no ties to organized gambling, and remains neutral with respect to public policy issues.
The NCPG's major programs include the following:
- Operation of the National Problem Gambling Helpline Network (800-522-4700), which is a single national access point to local resources.
- Administration of the National Certified Gambling Counselor (NCGC) credential.
- Holding the annual National Conference on the Prevention, Treatment, Research and Recovery of Problem Gambling, which is the world’s oldest and largest problem gambling-specific conference.
- Distribution of literature on problem gambling treatment, research and recovery.
- Organization of National Problem Gambling Awareness Week.
- Providing education on problem gambling issues to federal, state, tribal and international governments and agencies.