Making Moves On Money Management, Dutch Government Doubles Down On Protecting Youth

Following its decision to “target untargeted gambling advertising” by imposing strict publicity controls from July 1, the Dutch government has decided to double down on improving youth financial literacy by launching an €8 million (£6.86m) programme in schools to teach money management and debt risk.

And, crucially, the schools project will emphasise understanding the risks of online gambling and cryptocurrency investments.

Prompted by concerns that too much betting advertising fails to protect young people from its unwanted, and often insidious impact, all gambling publicity campaigns will henceforth be subjected to forensic analysis — and have to pass a litmus test that they are exclusively targeting an audience of at least 24-years and older.

The two-pronged drive is designed to protect, promote and inform better money management amongst Holland’s younger population.

And it aligns with similar progressive moves that have seen The Netherlands become a world leader in protecting its youth from the dangers of excessive gambling and other negative fiscal impacts.

Three-years-ago, for example, the city of Amsterdam adopted a debt-transfer programme, to take over the arrears of young adults who were struggling to get into work or education.

Young city creditors were given €750 as an incentive to pass their debt on to the municipality’s bank.

Debt, Cancelled

And they were offered the chance to have more of their debt cancelled if they agreed to engage in training or an educational programme.

The latest schools money management project is headed by Carola Schouten, Holland’s Minister for Poverty Prevention, Social Participation and Civic Pensions.

“This programme not only seeks to equip young people with important financial skills,” Schouten affirmed. “But also to create a support network within the school and community for those facing financial difficulties.

“It has been designed to improve financial literacy in schools to protect Dutch youth from incurring debt and ensure that money management is taught at a critical learning age.”

Critically, Schouten stressed: “The programme will emphasise understanding the risks of online gambling and cryptocurrency investments.”

According to Dutch government research, over 25 percent of vocational students currently have “significant” debts, or face “payment arrears”.

Schouten plans to expand the programme across all national primary and secondary schools from 2024.

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