A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Tabcorp seeks to block retailers from using juniors to sell lottery products

Tabcorp’s The Lott announced to retailers on Friday that staff under 15 years of age will no longer be allowed to sell lottery products. This is infuriating some retailers.

Tabcorp’s announcement claimed The restrictions on minors selling lottery products should not have a direct impact on your employment decisions. I have had retailers contact me claiming this is not true.

Retailers have staffed their businesses based on a set of rules and regulations. To have them change is challenging. To do this without wide consultation is disrespectful. To do it during a busy period of the year is offensive.

This move increases the labour cost base for selling lotteries in retail. It also reminds retailers that regulations they operate under are tighter than selling lottery products online, where an app or website cannot do a reasonable age check.


Join the discussion

  1. Michael

    I bet they let kids buy online using their parents phones.


  2. Steve

    Hmm . I wonder if they are going to compensate us for the increase in labour costs? Also wonder where the 14 year olds will now obtain their 1st job.? I agree seems strange timing to make such a decision just as retailers in NSW are about to reopen and for us in regional areas to be inundated with visitors to our towns.


  3. Graeme Day

    Back in the year 2002 NSW State lotteries tried to force the same issue in fact they made it a condition of our (newsagents trading) Richard Face was the Minister for Small Business in the NSW Labor Government at the time and I as CEO NANA Ltd tried contacting him to discuss the issue many times -result no avail.
    In frustration I rang Alan Jones Alan’s secretary rang me next day and Alan had organised a phone hook up with me prime time 7.30 am the next morning. Before contacting me on open radio 2GB he sorted out the issue with me and where/what we could do.
    He rang and the usual Good Morning, Graeme a short intro of my position and then the problem of juniors working for a newsagent a small business -trying to look after themselves =putting “bread on the table” etc. and I brought up the coupe de gras “Alan this is ridiculous these juniors can sell cigarettes as long as they don’t sell them to under 18 year old’s and even some check is made on them using the “entrapment technique” that is dressing an underaged girl up to look like over 18 and then the inspector comes in and fines the newsagent.” Alan got into it and away he went and then he added, “and this Minister Richard Face won’t even contact you in regard to all this what’s going on with these people he says’ I will be in contact, Disgraceful Graeme it’s disgraceful”
    I got off the phone as the switchboard at NANA was hot and the lady on the switch said Mr Face is on the ‘phone he wants to talk with you”
    The President Amanda Bronn and I met with Richard Face two days later discussed the problem/s and within a few days NSW Lotteries and NANA had come to an agreement that a junior (under 18 years old) could sell lottery products to anyone over 18 years old as long as someone over 18 was on the premises (as a supervisor) The owner of course was a great option, the ultimate supervisor being on the premises, especially the smaller operators.
    Most agents changed their staffing mix from a junior 14 years old to be with a staff member at least 18 years old.
    Chris Patterson, Director Customer & Agency Services NSW lotteries in charge of the newsagency channel was not pleased but took it well.
    I believe those conditions could be brought to the fore again as a reminder to both the NSW Government and Tabcorp as the same situation was resolved then as could be continued today.
    For our Newsagent members Annual Dinner which was held at the Westin Hotel in Sydney that same year, NANA invited Alan to be our Guest Speaker and Dinner guest he obliged, and we got a record crowd especially those members from Country NSW Many had their ‘photos taken with him and made it a memorable occasion.


  4. Graeme Day

    NANA LTD NSW Newsagents Association has achieved success in having put TabCorp on notice re this situtaion with the result that the notification has now been withdrawn.
    One should be on guard for it may arise again as it did this time let’s hope it’ another 19 years on if ever at all..


  5. Mark Fletcher

    I think there was more engagement than just NANA on this Graeme. Plenty of us in representative roles robustly represented newsagents on this.


  6. Graeme Day

    Thanks Mark,
    I didn’t say that there wasn’t others. i was talking NSW and the mention of NANA Ltd is because I recieved comment from members that they objected under the Age Discrimination Act which I found interesting.
    Nbody else brought that up including your good self.
    19 years ago I took it public a very different approach as the this alternative didn’t apply or didn’t exist or maybe we just got it right on the day.
    Nevertheless they have succeeded in with direct application on behalf of their members.
    This ahould not be seen as the only influence as all prostests count and this is why I posted my own way of doing it those 19 years ago.
    Mind S.A has a very different circumstance so they would not be objecting and the Lottery licencensesw are leased on a State by State agreement and NANA Ltd stood up for NSW.
    I congratulate them for this and all others including yourself for the post for the idea was not made public by Tabcorp as a consdiration it was going to be fete accompli.


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