The road to legalizing the single game sport in Canada has cleared another hurdle today.
Bill C-218, aiming to amend Canada’s Criminal Code to allow sports betting for individual events, was passed in the House of Commons second reading today by 303-15 votes.
Voting result: Bill No. C218 was adopted in 2nd reading and referred to the # JUST Committee. #cdnpoli
Yes: 303 ✅
No: 15❌ pic.twitter.com/Mq1z9CwE01
– In the Chamber (@HoCChamber) February 17, 2021
The private members bill tabled by Conservative MP Kevin Waugh is now being sent to the House Judiciary Committee for further investigation. From there, it has to get another vote in the house and approved in the Senate before it becomes law.
Currently, the Canadian Criminal Code prohibits betting on individual sporting events. As a result, provincial legal gambling sites such as Parlay only may offer bets where players must correctly predict the outcome of multiple games in order to win their bet.
To bet on the outcome of a single sporting event, Canadians must, and many do, turn to the gray or black market.
Canadians wager about $ 10 billion annually on illegal bookmaking, usually run by organized crime, according to the Canadian Gaming Association. Annually around $ 4 billion is wagered through unregulated offshore gambling websites while only $ 500 million is played through legal provincial sports lottery sites like PlayNow.com in BC or Proline.ca in Ontario.
“BCLC urges Ottawa to work together and take the finish line,” BCLC announced in a media release today.
“We urge all members of Parliament to work together to legalize single bets for the benefit of our players and provinces,” added Stewart Groumoutis, BCLC director for eGaming. “Our players want sports betting for individual events and we are ready to offer them this expanded offering in a safe and responsible manner.”
In British Columbia, BCLC estimates that sports betting for individual events would generate additional revenue of $ 125 million to $ 175 million.