A Process Evaluation of a Self-Exclusion Program: A Qualitative Investigation from the Perspective of Excluders and Non-Excluders

  • Nerilee Hing
  • Barry Tolchard
  • Elaine Nuske
  • Louise Holdsworth
  • Margaret Tiyce


This paper draws on a process evaluation of Queensland’ self-exclusion program to examine how people use the program, motivations for self-excluding, barriers to use, experiences and perceptions of program elements, and potential improvements. Detailed, reflective, first-person accounts were gathered through interviews with 103 problem gamblers, including excluders and non-excluders. Identified strengths include the program’s widespread availability. Many self-excluders reported positive experiences with responsive, knowledgeable, respectful venue staff. Major weaknesses include low publicity, limited privacy and confidentiality, the need to exclude individually from venues, and deficiencies in venue monitoring for breaches, which hinder the program’s capacity to meet harm minimisation objectives. While the program reaches some problem gamblers, others are delayed or deterred from self-excluding by low awareness, shame and embarrassment, difficulties of excluding from multiple venues, and low confidence in venue staff to maintain confidentiality and provide effective monitoring. Potential improvements include wider publicity, off-site multi-venue exclusion, and technology-assisted monitoring.


Self-exclusion Process evaluation Motivators Barriers Qualitative Australia 



This research was funded by a Responsible Gambling Research Grant from the Queensland Department of Justice and Attorney General. Our appreciation is extended to the participants for their important and valuable involvement.

Conflicts of Interest

All authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest in relation to this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nerilee Hing
    • 1
  • Barry Tolchard
    • 2
  • Elaine Nuske
    • 1
  • Louise Holdsworth
    • 1
  • Margaret Tiyce
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Gambling Education and Research, School of Tourism and Hospitality ManagementSouthern Cross UniversityLismoreAustralia
  2. 2.School of HealthUniversity of New EnglandArmidaleAustralia

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