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Ensuring Proper Licensing For Various Fundraising Raffles and Lotteries


Broadcast time: 8:00 AM

Date: August 7, 2020

Fundraising is important for many local charitable and not-for profit organizations. Lotteries, including raffles and bingos, for charities and non-profit groups generate much needed revenue for these groups so that they can provide their programs and services.

The City of Sarnia, together with the Sarnia Police, and Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) ensure lotteries are run in a legal and fair way. Eligible charitable and non-profit groups, once approved, are eligible for lottery licences from the City or AGCO in Sarnia.

Businesses and individuals wishing to help charitable and non-profit groups are encouraged to speak directly with the organization, as licences are issued to the eligible group.

There are rules that must be followed by eligible charitable and non-profit groups to run licenced lotteries in Sarnia. Lottery events require a lottery licence in order to be permitted. Lottery events conducted without a licence are prohibited by the Criminal Code of Canada.

A lottery event contains three components:

  • A prize,
  • A chance to win the prize
  • Consideration or a fee

Lotteries can be a lot of fun, especially for the winner’s. However, if you are participating in a lottery, ensure that it is licenced. Reports of unlicensed illegal raffles on social media have been received, where individuals are requesting payments for their personal gain. (Listings may not promote the buying, selling or facilitation of online gambling for money or money’s worth, including digital currencies. Online gambling includes gaming, betting, lotteries, raffles, casino, fantasy sports, bingo, poker and sweepstakes in an online environment.)

Simply put, the holding of any sort of lottery, raffle, gaming, or anything along these lines, without a licence, is illegal.

If you notice a violation of the Community Standards on Facebook, it can be reported these posts by following these steps:

You can also report the group by using the link below:

If you have any questions regarding holding a raffle, lottery, or any other sort of lottery you are please asked to contact Andrea Lane, Customer Service Manager, at 519-332-0330 Ext. 3231 (Email: lottery@sarnia.ca)



Constable Giovanni Sottosanti

Media Officer

Tel: 519-344-8861 Ext 6168

Email: 168@police.sarnia.on.ca