Gambling, Gaming and Technology Use (formerly known as the Problem Gambling Institute of Ontario) helps to build a better mental health and addictions system in Ontario. We support addictions and mental health service providers through training and education, developing digital tools and resources, and facilitating knowledge sharing.
Gambling, Gaming and Technology Use (GGTU) is part of the Knowledge Exchange and Education portfolio in CAMH’s Provincial System Support Program (PSSP), which moves evidence to action to improve systems in Ontario. We develop and deliver trainings to provide professionals with the latest information on evidence-informed practices for the identification and treatment of problem gambling and other behavioural addictions, including problem technology use. Our courses and webinars are accredited by the Canadian Problem Gambling Certification Board and the Canadian Addiction Counsellors Certification Federation.
Problem gambling is associated with depression, anxiety, suicide, and substance use problems. Problem gambling also affects family and marital relationships, as well as work and academic performance. It can lead to bankruptcy and crime. As online gambling and gaming increase in popularity, there’s also a growing need to better understand the connection with problem technology use, which can include excessive behaviours related to gambling, such as playing video games, accessing social networks and online pornography, using online auctions or shopping, texting, and using smartphones. As more research emerges, GGTU will develop new evidence-based resources and trainings about problem technology use and related issues.
The history of GGTU dates back more than 20 years, when it was formally known as the Problem Gambling Project. The project later morphed into the Problem Gambling Institute of Ontario (PGIO) under CAMH, in an effort to advance work in problem gambling. The collaboration between PGIO and CAMH connected researchers, clinicians, and other educators. PGIO served as a hub—where people with complex gambling problems could access resources, and where CAMH clinicians and specialists could share their expertise in gambling problems and other mental health and addictions problems.
Dr. Michael Bagby, Director of Clinical Research at CAMH, and Dr. Wayne Skinner, Deputy Clinical Director for CAMH’s Addictive Program, were instrumental in pushing for enhanced partnerships and community connections. They believed in bringing together CAMH’s diverse resources into one integrated identity with the collective goal of reducing harms caused by problem gambling.
Since joining PSSP in 2018, GGTU has been committed to reducing the harms associated with problem gambling, gaming, and technology use. It does this by providing evidence-informed trainings, webinars, online and in-person courses, conferences, and other resources for providers of mental health and addiction services.
GGTU also develops and disseminates customized training and resources for a broad range of allied professionals. These trainings and resources promote awareness, early identification, and, when necessary, referral services to relevant programs and supports.
What we do
We aim to provide professionals with the latest information on evidence-informed practices for the identification and treatment of problem gambling and other behavioural addictions, including problem technology use.
We develop and deliver capacity building activities through continuing professional development online courses, webinars profiling clinical, research, and community perspectives, clinical application workshops, and advanced trainings on topics of special interest.
We facilitate and disseminate knowledge translation and exchange through our community of interest, quarterly newsletter, dialogues on current research and policy, and evidence informed products and resources.
We support community-based organizations in providing problem gambling awareness and counseling services to ethnocultural communities.