Children’s poker workshop panned by solicitor general

B.C. Solicitor General John Les says he’s appalled that a Vancouver company is planning to teach children how to play Texas Hold’em at a poker workshop next month.

Nevada North Entertainment is putting on the Kids Poker Tour for youngsters ranging in age from 10 to 18 at the end of June.

The event’s brochure says the workshop will teach better communication and social interaction, good sportsmanship, and math and number skills, among other benefits.

But the solicitor general said those benefits can be achieved in other ways. „There are lots of good ways to learn all of those good things and it doesn’t have to be a poker game.

„Targeting kids as young as 10 years old, I think is reprehensible, and our government is certainly opposed to minors being targeted this way.“

– Les plans to watch event ‚like a hawk‘ –

For an undisclosed fee, the young people will also be offered a half-day tournament with prizes such as education subsidies and free entry to future events.

Les said the tournament and prizes could make the workshop illegal. He added his staff will be watching the event „like a hawk“ – and will be ready to shut it down.

„The minute they step out of line, I want enforcement action taken.“

A spokesperson for Nevada North Entertainment declined an interview request by CBC News.