The Atlantic Lottery Corp. is adding Korean to its training manuals after noticing a spike in the number of retailers using the language.
ALC has seen a growth in the number of Korean-speaking retailers in the Maritimes, particularly in New Brunswick.
The corporation estimates up to 10 per cent of people selling lottery tickets and scratch cards in the province speak Korean.
So the Crown agency decided to offer online training courses in Korean to retailers, mostly about the risks associated with gambling and problem gamblers.
'We started getting feedback from our field staff that we're seeing an increased population of retailers that are Korean-speaking.' — Kim Wilson, Atlantic Lottery Corp.
Kim Wilson, the manager of corporate social responsibility at the lottery corporation, said the training is required for anyone who sells lottery products.
"Retailers are subject through their lottery retail licence agreement to take responsible gambling training. And we've offered it for many years in English and French," Wilson said.
"We started getting feedback from our field staff that we're seeing an increased population of retailers that are Korean-speaking."
The corporation worked with a Korean-speaking retailer to make sure the language and tone were appropriate for the training course.
"It's the first step to getting what we consider very important business information out to our retailers. Our responsible gaming strategy and the support we get from our retailers is critical to our business," she said.
Statistics Canada indicated in the 2011 census that Korean was the third most common mother tongue, among non-official languages, in New Brunswick.
There were 1,860 people citing Korean as their mother tongue, which represented 0.3 per cent of the total population.
Byung Lee moved to Moncton from South Korea four years ago, wanting a better life for his family.
He now owns a convenience store in the city.
The addition of Korean into the training programs will help people who are still struggling with English or French, he said.
"Even though many Koreans live here, the Korean language is just kind of a minor language. And many Korean owners are suffering from the language skills too," he said.