Bonus bets out under Qld law reform



Betting giants will be banned from offering bonus bets to open an account and for referring a friend under new laws introduced in Queensland. Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D'Ath said the rate of online problem gambling was three times higher than other types.

"We know that inducements to open an account, such as free bonus bets, are being offered by some online wagering operators and that this is contributing to excessive and unsafe gambling levels," she said.

The proposed ban follows a national agreement in late 2018, with Queensland also moving to ban incentives offered to punters to stop them from closing an account or from unsubscribing from direct marketing.

Consent laws in Queensland will also change under new legislation introduced by Ms D'Ath in state parliament on Thursday.

The reforms follow recommendations from the Queensland Law Reform Commission's review of consent laws and the excuse of mistake of fact.

Ms D'Ath told state parliament that the QLRC found four legal principles that should be explicitly spelled out in the Criminal Code, including that silence alone does not amount to consent and that the voluntary intoxication of the defendant is irrelevant to the reasonableness of their belief about consent.

"All of these recommendations are implemented in the amendments to the Criminal Code in this Bill," she said.

"The implementation of the QLRC's recommendations in this Bill will strengthen and clarify the operation of the law in Queensland.

"Furthermore, it represents further progress towards Queenslanders being able to live free of sexual violence."

Meanwhile gay conversion therapy by health service providers in Queensland has been outlawed.

Queensland yesterday became the first state or territory in Australia to ban the "highly destructive and unethical practices" which can urge LGBTIQ people to suppress who they are.

"Of course, no treatment or practice can change a person's sexual attraction or experience of gender, and so it is no surprise that survivors of conversion therapy report experiencing deep feelings of shame, alienation and hopelessness, often resulting in symptoms of depression, anxiety and, in some cases, thoughts of suicide or self-harm," Deputy Premier and Health Minister Steven Miles said.

"The risks are even greater for LGBTIQ children and young adults, who are already vulnerable to harassment and discrimination."

Originally published as Bonus bets out under Qld law reform