Law Week 2017 Justice Journeys

Rebecca

Rebecca, a criminology and criminal justice student studying at Griffith University spent 2 days with Gaming Services Branch, a division of the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation.

Hands-on experience was just what Rebecca was hoping for when she took on her placement with Gaming Services at the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation. Rebecca also gained insight into the policies and processes which are the backbone of the public sector.

Having learnt about the various careers related to my degree I was excited to finally experience a law and justice path that I could potentially be working in after the completion of my degree. I was fortunate enough to be successful in gaining a placement with the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR) in Brisbane. I am currently studying a Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith University. With my degree coming to an end, I was keen to gain a hands-on experience in order to best prepare myself for my future career. This experience was an extremely eye-opening and insightful one that allowed me to gain an understanding of how a government department works, and how each individual plays a vital role in the day-to-day running of such an organisation.

During this experience I spent time with 3 units of the Gaming Services division; the technical, operations and probity units. Understanding how these units interact and work together to reach decisions and outcomes was very interesting. There is a clear hierarchical nature of the division that ensures each task is addressed in an organised and structured manner.

The first unit I was placed with was the operations unit where I shadowed the unit manager, Michael. I was given an overview of the area, learning their aims and current submissions. After a general understanding of the work they conduct, I was set the task of responding to an email from an individual seeking guidance on obtaining an online gaming licence. During this task I had to refer to relevant legislation under the Interactive Gambling Act 1998, and inform the individual of the laws surrounding the licence. After completing this task, Michael reviewed my work and explained to me how the organisation would generally reply to such inquiries. This experience allowed me to appreciate the consistency such government organisations seek to maintain.

Testing the technology used in the gambling industry.Testing the technology used in the gambling industry.

On my second day I shadowed Ron, the manager of the probity unit. The probity unit conducts investigations regarding people involved in the Queensland gaming and liquor industry. The unit takes into factors like character, honesty, integrity, financial stability and association with others. These investigations determine the suitability of these people to be involved in the liquor and gaming industries in Queensland.

Going into the day I assumed this would entail investigations such as simple criminal history checks. How wrong was I? The team conduct in-depth investigations, often travelling overseas to obtain all relevant information on licensees to ensure their legitimacy and suitability. During this time I was set the task of reading a current matter relating to a Management Agreement and the supposedly unfair clauses. This task allowed me to gain a true insight into the cases the probity unit investigate on a daily, weekly and even yearly basis.

On my final day I visited the technical services team. Although I do not study any form of technology, this experience was very relevant, and for me, tied everything together. Seeing how the other units addressed issues involving legislation, licences and licensees allowed me to appreciate the importance of technology used in the gambling sector. I was introduced to the work conducted on a day-to-day basis, and the sheer volume of gaming products evaluated and tested by the team to ensure the integrity of gaming is maintained was mind blowing.

Often submissions, products and concepts that reach the Gaming Services Branch require work from all units, and as such, teamwork was very important. During this time I was also able to visit the OLGR lab, where gaming machines and products are tested to ensure they comply with the various standards imposed on the manufacturers and gaming operators.

Overall, the experience allowed me to apply knowledge from my university studies to the real world. It provided me with an invaluable insight into government departments and the strict hierarchical nature of them. I am very grateful for such an experience and could not recommend a justice journey enough to current justice or law students and/or enthusiasts.