WASHINGTON, Pa. (KDKA) — What many consider a simple or harmless bet at the poker table or slot machine could be a destructive and crippling force for a gaming addict.

Those seeking help often put themselves on what’s called a self-exclusion list, which is a recovery tool that keeps them out of casinos.

At the Meadows Casino in Washington County, two men on the list were allowed to gamble. Others also received promotional mailings from the venue.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Board fined the casino Wednesday for those violations, resulting in a $40,000 fine.

Gambling counselor Dr. Nancy Smith told KDKA’s Kym Gable, “So, if people are choosing self-exclusion, they’re struggling. They’re saying, ‘I can’t control this behavior. I need help.’ So to think that they are getting promotional materials from the casino is troubling.”

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The Meadows declined an on-camera interview with KDKA.

They did issue this statement:

“The Meadows Casino understands the seriousness of compulsive gambling and has in place a variety of programs to help minimize its impact on consumers. We have taken additional measures in an effort to prevent future occurrences at our facility.”