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2018 - 2019

Community Report

Nova Scotia’s gaming industry plays an important role in the province’s economy.

Nova Scotia Gaming is home to a committed team of individuals with expertise in corporate social responsibility and public policy. We work to ensure a regulated gaming industry that is responsible, accountable and sustainable through a Social Responsibility Charter that guides our work under five pillars: responsible gambling; integrity and security; citizens and community; corporate governance; and stakeholder relationships.

Looking back over the past year, we’re proud of the work we’ve accomplished with our two operating partners, Atlantic Lottery and Casino Nova Scotia, as well as the casino’s parent company, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation.

Join us as we take a look back at 2019 in our Community Report.

Responsible Gambling

Responsible Gambling is about providing information so people can make informed decisions about their play, including the choice to play.

NSGC is acknowledged as a leader in responsible gambling having created and introduced responsible gambling programs where none existed. Today, we deliver a suite of comprehensive responsible gambling programs.

Public support of responsible gambling initiatives:


Nova Scotians continue to tell us they support the work we’re doing.


More than 53,750 visitors have stopped by our Responsible Gambling Resource Centres at the Halifax and Sydney casinos since 2005-06. Visitors leave with information on how to manage their play and where to go for help if they need it.

Our responsible gambling brochures are now available in: Arabic, English, French, Mandarin and Mi’kmaq.


Responsible Gambling Awareness Week is an annual event with a year-round message: the more you understand the game, the more likely it is to be a positive experience.

This past year, we expanded the campaign to bring these important messages to players in the Spring and the Fall, and awareness continues to grow.

In our most recent Spring campaign, 87% of Nova Scotians said the campaign delivered important messages for people to think about

Website Visits

5,400 in 2017-18
45,000 in 2018-19

Quiz Submissions

730 in 2017-18
2,150 in 2018-19


Meet Christina and Alana: Responsible gambling ambassadors for the 18th annual Responsible Gambling Awareness Week

It’s lunchtime and the shopping mall is busy with people taking a break from their jobs in the office towers above. Laughter and the click, click, click of a gaming wheel can be heard coming from the Atlantic Lottery Booth at the centre of Scotia Square mall in downtown Halifax. It’s Nova Scotia Gaming Corporation’s 18th annual Responsible Gambling Awareness Week, when Nova Scotians can visit to test their knowledge of how to gamble responsibly or they can meet and talk with a responsible gambling ambassador at one of the many open house events at ticket and video lottery locations across the province.

‘When you know better you do better’

Christine Cullen and Alana Nafthal are two of those ambassadors and they’ve just spent an hour having lively conversations with passersby. They’re excited and clearly passionate about their role in this campaign. Alana has been an ambassador for the campaign for five years.

“I’m always mindful this is an education for people. When you know better you do better. It’s about knowing how to make good choices when it comes to responsible gambling,” she says.

RG Check Accreditation

Both the Halifax and Sydney casinos maintained their RG Check Accreditation in 2019. This program for land-based casinos was created by the Responsible Gambling Council, an independent non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of problem gambling.

The RG Check Accreditation process involves an extensive independent review of responsible gambling programs, including Voluntary Self-Exclusion.

RG Training

We work with approximately 1,300 ticket and video lottery retailers. These include Legions and small businesses employing Nova Scotians in rural and urban parts of the province.

Additionally, there are more than 500 direct jobs in Nova Scotia’s regulated gaming industry.

If you work in the gaming business, responsible gambling training is mandatory, and 100% of retailers and NSGC staff are trained in responsible gambling annually.

Testing games before launching

New games in all of NSGC’s business lines were made available to Nova Scotians over the past year.

  • New Scratch and Breakopen tickets
  • Trials to replace video lottery offerings
  • LottoMAX Draws now two times a week

Part of NSGC’s role is to complete a Responsible Gambling Assessment on every new initiative before it launches. In 2018-19, we completed 633 assessments.

625 approved
8 approved with modifications
0 declined

Integrity & Security

We offer games that are fair and honest. We provide information about how games work and the odds of winning. We also protect privacy rights and personal information.

Find out what we’re doing to ensure players are protected in Nova Scotia.

Percentage of payouts

If someone chooses to gamble, they should know that the odds of winning always favour the house. If they decide to play, they have a right to expect the game to be fair and honest, secure and free from tampering, and that prizes go to the rightful owner.

Odds of winning:

Video Lottery


Ticket Lottery


Casino Slots Average


Casino Tables Average


Age of majority

Lottery products are fun, and make great gifts, but only for adults.

NSGC and its ticket lottery operator, Atlantic Lottery, take measures to ensure Nova Scotians understand that lottery products are sold to adults 19 and older.

NSGC manages compliance with age of majority rules, and we have policies in place to ensure all retailers comply with those rules year-round.

We also participate in the McGill University Holiday Campaign to promote age-appropriate gift-giving and ensure lottery products are not given to minors as gifts.

Money-laundering Prevention

Casinos have an important role to play when it comes to identifying possible incidents of money laundering.

NSGC works closely with its casino operator to make sure Casino Nova Scotia is compliant with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) reporting requirements. A recent third-party review found Casino Nova Scotia is meeting its obligations when it comes to anti-money laundering.

Citizens & Community

We work to connect with the citizens and communities where we live and work. We also believe that good corporate citizenship starts in the community. That is why we support community initiatives as part of our social responsibility commitment.

See our commitments in the community for this past year.


Support4Sport is a designated ticket lottery program that makes meaningful impact in Nova Scotia’s sport community. Since its inception the program has contributed over $42 million to support amateur athletes, coaches, officials, and community sport organizations, and over 125,000 Nova Scotians benefit each year.

NSGC provides funding to Sport Nova Scotia which manages the program. Working together, these are a few of the great events we’ve supported:

  • Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame Future Hall of Famers Spring Dinner
  • Support4Sport Awards
  • Atlantic Coaches Conference


Support4Culture is a designated lottery program that supports arts, culture and heritage in communities across Nova Scotia. The program was introduced in 2013 and has contributed more than $16 million to 400 artists and organizations.

Support4Culture funds are distributed through the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage. A number of projects were supported in 2019, such as:

  • Association of Nova Scotia Museums Annual Conference
  • Highland Arts Theatre
  • Robert Merritt Awards


Chad Comeau grew up in the Clare region of Nova Scotia. Chad and his project “Clarevoyance,” are the proud recipients of Support4Culture funding. Growing up in Meteghan, Chad was always drawn to video games as a player. Eventually this interest grew into a passion. After studying abroad for many years, Chad knew that he wanted to return to his hometown in Nova Scotia. “Clarevoyance” showcases the beautiful landscapes and people that Clare has to offer. The game provides the player with a tour of Clare and an adventure in to the history and culture of the vibrant community. Over 100 community members contributed to the game’s creation and success.


“Without the help of Support4Culture, we would not have been able to bring this project to life.” – Chad Comeau


Nova Scotians have a long history of helping each other and giving to good causes. The more we give, the more we stand to gain.

In 2018-19, Nova Scotians donated more than $169,000 to good causes, including Special Olympics in Clare and New Glasgow, and YMCA locations in Sydney and Port Hawkesbury. 

NSGC supports these events through the Support4Communities program. We helped organizations host 19 successful Monte Carlo nights last year, trained volunteers and helped promote the fundraising events.

Support4Communities Events

NSGC held seminars on how to host charitable gaming fundraisers.

Learn how to host Casino-themed Monte Carlo Nights in your community by attending a free community seminar in 2020. Check for future events.

Corporate Governance

Good governance is associated with achieving better outcomes. It means being transparent and accountable. The way we conduct business is held to the highest ethical standards and we are responsible to the government and people of Nova Scotia.

Find out how we’re meeting that responsibility.

Proud Nova Scotians

Our staff and Board of Directors are comprised of people who put social responsibility at the forefront of everything we do.

We are grateful for the contributions of our Board members, past and present. The following are current members of our Board:

  • Byron Rafuse, FCPA, FCMA (Board Chair)
  • Jeannine Lagassé
  • Tracey Taweel
  • Les Barker
  • Sara Greenblatt

Board expenses are posted on NSGC’s website along with those of senior leadership.

VLT attrition

There are almost 300 small businesses across the province that offer video lottery in their establishments (in addition to Mi’kmaw communities). These businesses are trained on how to help players make informed decisions, and each terminal has mandatory responsible gambling features.

If a location closes permanently, the terminals are removed as part of Nova Scotia’s attrition policy. As of March 31, 2019 more than 190 video lottery terminals have been removed from the market.

Stakeholder Relationships

Our business is conducted with the help and involvement of a large number of partners. Each relationship is a tangible asset of our organization. We respect and learn from the experiences and expertise of our many stakeholders. Working together provides the best opportunities to advance our social responsibility agenda.

See how we’re working together with stakeholders.

Vip! Program Launch

Nova Scotia Gaming launched the vip! coaching program with the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic in 2018. This program helps raise the bar for what it means to be a coach in Nova Scotia.

Within the first year more than 200 coaches enrolled to receive clothing, educational resources, professional development, networking opportunities and more.

“The Support4Sport vip program is one example of our commitment to fund what matters to Nova Scotians. We’re proud to work with our partners at Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic to deliver a program that helps coaches succeed.”
– Bob MacKinnon, President and CEO of Nova Scotia Gaming

Voluntary Self-Exclusion

Nova Scotia Gaming is committed to delivering responsible gambling options and recognizes the need for a strong Voluntary Self-Exclusion program. In 2018, we supported the provincial government in a collaborative process to improve the program. This included engaging experts, people who work in the gaming industry and Nova Scotians on how to improve the program. The new Voluntary Self-Exclusion program will roll out in Nova Scotia and will make it easier for people to access help if they choose to voluntarily self-exclude.

Learn more about Voluntary Self-Exclusion at

Participation in Gambling

Understanding how often Nova Scotians gamble is important to the work we do. That’s why we collaborate with the Department of Health and Wellness to conduct regular research that helps maintain a socially responsible and accountable approach to gaming.

After surveying Nova Scotians, we learned that:

  • 74% of adults in Nova Scotia reported gambling at least once last year.
  • Of these individuals, 93% gambled with no risk of developing problems.

Sponsoring community events

NSGC is proud to sponsor a wide-variety of events throughout the province. Some examples include:

  • Feeling the Love event, in support of Hospice Halifax
  • Celtic Colours
  • Atlantic Convenience Store Association Expo

A collaborative approach

NSGC works collaboratively with stakeholders to deliver on our commitment to maintain a sustainable, socially responsible and accountable approach to gambling. In the last year, we provided $6.6 million for the prevention, education and treatment of problem gambling. We worked closely with Finance and Treasury Board, the regulator (Alcohol Gaming Fuel and Tobacco division of Service Nova Scotia) and Casino Nova Scotia to recommend improvements to the Voluntary Self-Exclusion program.

Gambling Support Network

We know, for the vast majority of Nova Scotians, gambling is a form of entertainment. Anyone who believes they, or someone they care about is experiencing harm from their gambling can access help through the Gambling Support Network.



Thank You

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