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Illinois Lawmakers Begin Backlash to Skee-Ball Gambling

Backlash against the idea of turning children’s games like Skee-Ball into skill-based gambling games began this week when an Illinois lawmaker introduced a bill that would outlaw the concept entirely in “family amusement establishments”. If passed into law, HB5832 would slam the brakes on Dave and Buster’s recent attempt to allow real money wagering on children’s games like Skee-Ball and Hot Shots.

The man behind the bill, Rep. Daniel Didich is not an anti-gambling pearl clutcher and actually brings up some pretty good points about why gambling is regulated in the first place. Didich explained his efforts in a statement reported on by, saying, “Gambling establishments are among the most strictly regulated businesses in Illinois. Everyone involved in the gambling industry in Illinois undergoes thorough background checks, is required to implement security protocols, can only offer games that are fair and safe for players, and must create a responsible environment to protect minors and problem gamblers. It is inappropriate for family-friendly arcades to facilitate unregulated gambling on their premises. These businesses simply do not have the ability to oversee gambling activity in a safe and responsible manner.”

Didich also points out that attempting to keep children away from gambling games in a place like Dave and Buster’s is something of a fool’s game telling PlayUSA, “What they announced is just so inappropriate. In the past few years, gambling has expanded in a lot of ways that I think are good, but in the process become a much larger part of daily life for a lot of people. I think there are some spaces and environments that are just not appropriate for gambling to be pushed on people, especially places where there are lots of children. The Dave & Buster’s in my district is in a mall. It just doesn’t make sense for a whole host reasons for them to be getting into this the way they are.”

He went on to add that he would be willing to pull back or modify the bill if Dave and Buster’s backs off their plans to turn their their arcades on casinos.