How Gambling Was Legalised In Canada
With how widespread gambling in both casinos and online is; it’s pretty hard to imagine a time when gambling was prohibited or banned. But one thing that can be sure for passionate gamblers – they always try to persevere. One of the places where gamblers are trying their hardest at getting gambling restrictions lifted – and seeing some success – is Canada.
The country has quite a turbulent history with the past time of gambling; – dating all the way back to the 1400s. We’re going to take a look at some of the most notable events when it comes to gambling legislation in the country and see what the future could hold.
The Origins of Casino Gaming and Gambling in Canada
The first ever records of gambling in Canada go all the way back to the Palaeolithic period; but because that was so long ago there isn’t much information known about gambling in this period.
Some keen researchers found a six-sided dice that can be dated back to 3000 B.C. in China; – so it’s quite understandable that it would take a while for gambling to get to Canada from there!
We can’t pinpoint the exact time that the people in early Canada actually began playing any sort of game of chance; but we know that the indigenous peoples of Canada played a game called Slahal with animal bones. This game is still played by them today.
The next big event in history that saw gambling being mentioned was when it was under British rule in the 15th century. The rule of the Brits saw the culture and public view of gambling totally shift; with all forms of gambling being banned, including fun games of chance with no money involved.
This ban from the British lasted quite a long time and the law changed gradually thanks to a number of factors. Even with the ban, people often still played card games; such as simple blackjack and poker like you’ll find in the casinos at CasinoSource. It was the fact the government couldn’t really physically stop the people of Canada from playing these games that saw them start to think about loosening up the regulation.
Canada gained its independence in 1867 and gambling still remained a frowned upon activity. They even started to backpedal on the small changes in the law that had been brought in, banning all forms of gambling in 1892.
The Big Legislation Change of 1970
The biggest changes in Canadian gambling came in 1970. The laws surrounding gambling were reviewed and brought up to date with current views; which resulted in the government allowing each province of Canada to legislate its own gambling laws. This was a huge change for the country and the beginning of the multi-billion dollar gambling sector in Canada.
It was another 15 years before sports betting was made legal; – but only parlay bets were allowed, with single bets still illegal. Then, in 1989, the first land-based casino was built in Winnipeg, setting another landmark in Canadian history. Montreal followed suit soon after and a majority of provinces had a casino by the end of the century.
Yet another landmark for not just Canada, but the world, was the creation of the first-ever online gambling regulators in 1996 – the Mohawk Territory Kahnawake Gaming Commission. Being the first of its kind, it set out rules and legislation for online casinos and was a linchpin in the creation of policies used all over the world.
From here, it was only upward as the online gambling; and casino industry took off, which leads us to where Canada is today.
Gambling in Canada Today – And the Future…
The current revenue of the gambling industry in Canada is staggering – it’s over $12 billion. This isn’t so surprising when you realize that around 75% of all Canadians have tried their hand at some sort of gambling.
Gambling has become one of the most profitable and widely enjoyed forms of entertainment throughout Canada – although there are still strict laws in place throughout many of the provinces. Only a few have fully opened up their doors to outside casino operators; with many big names in the industry applying for licenses in these provinces.
There aren’t any restrictions for players in Canada enjoying offshore casinos though, which many of them do.
The future only holds good things for Canada and the gambling industry. There’s very little doubt that more of the provinces will relax their laws; allowing more Canadian tax revenue into their province. And with the advent of new technology; who knows – maybe Canada will break new territory and have the first-ever Virtual Reality casino?