500+ Formerly Disassociated Gamblers Allowed Back In Detroit Casinos

Written By Matt Schoch on June 8, 2021

More than 500 people have taken their names off the Michigan Disassociated Persons List since the adoption of a new law that allows the reversal of a lifetime ban from Detroit casinos.

As of May 31, 545 people have taken advantage of the new law, which was endorsed by a Michigan responsible gambling advocacy group.

The law, enacted in October 2020, allows for applicants to come off the list if they’ve been on it for at least five years.

The Disassociated Persons List was pursuant to Michigan law in 1996 and established in 2000. As of June 1 this year, the MGCB had placed 4,885 applicants on the list.

More than 1 in 10 on banned list have since come off

New Michigan Gaming Control Board executive director Henry Williams announced the statistics at Tuesday’s regular board meeting, the first gathering under his charge.

Williams said 625 applications asked for removal from the list as of the end of May.

Of the 545 taken off the list, five have since asked back on to the list, Williams said.

Another 28 of the 625 applications were denied because the applicants were not eligible or did not respond to omissions letters sent to them, Williams said.

The remaining applications currently are under review.

As of now, 11.2% of those on the list took advantage of the new law to remove their lifetime ban.

Also on Tuesday, Detroit casinos released their May earnings, detailing $109.7 million in revenue, down 12.8% from May 2019 before coronavirus pandemic restrictions were in place in 2020. That year, the Detroit casinos were not open in May.

Responsible gambling advocate: Lifetime ban too much of a deterrent to join

Michael Burke, executive director of the Michigan Association on Problem Gambling, has spoken out on behalf of the new law.

“The majority of our board felt the Disassociated Persons List lifetime ban in Michigan may have acted as a deterrent to gamblers who may be more likely to sign up if they have other self-exclusion options, such as a two- or five-year ban available,” Burke said when the law was announced.

An individual on the list who enters a Detroit casino is guilty of criminal trespassing punishable by imprisonment for no more than a year, a fine of no more than $1,000, or both.

For an application to join the Michigan Disassociated Persons List, call 1-888-223-3044.

Michigan also has Responsible Gambling Database for online play

The Disassociated Persons List is separate from the Responsible Gambling Database, a new self-exclusionary tool for Michigan online gambling.

Michigan residents can self-exclude from online gambling accounts for one or five years. Operators also offer their own self-exclusionary tools.

MORE ON PROBLEM GAMBLING: New MGCB director Henry Williams explains his plan

Only 12 residents have applied for the Responsible Gambling Database, MGCB spokesperson Mary Kay Bean said Tuesday. Of those, nine are on the state’s database for internet sports betting and internet gaming. Three other applications had incomplete information.

You can reach the Michigan Problem Gambling Hotline at 1-800-270-7117.

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Matt Schoch

A Michigan native, Matt has worked at newspapers in Michigan, Missouri and the Virgin Islands. A versatile sports reporter, Matt has covered sailing on the Great Lakes, cricket in the Caribbean, high school and pro playoffs, and the Olympics in Rio. He's also the host of the Locked On Pistons Podcast and producer of a documentary on Emoni Bates. A former blackjack dealer, Matt has studied the industry from all sides.

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