Tuesday, December 04, 2012

the Christchurch Fiasco - The Insurance Aftershock and its implications for New Zealand and beyond

This is a very important, timely publication, and not just for residents of Christchurch, it should be read by every homeowner and policymaker
The book is well summed up in the concluding part of the author's thoughtful preface which the publishers have allowed me to reproduce below:

"This book considers the response to the unprecedented property damage, the role of central and local government in the recovery phase, the long-term implications of the Earthquake Commission (EQC) and the Government Natural Disaster Fund. It also examines the financial vulnerability of the property insurance industry to mega-catastrophic events and suggests how government could improve New Zealand’s ability to mitigate losses and finance large insured losses resulting from catastrophic events. I expose some of the stark realities of the insurance landscape during difficult and large-scale insurance claim times, hoping to stimulate debate around the role of government and the private insurance industry in this country, and to propose an insurance alternative for natural disaster coverage with the object of better preparing the nation for the next, inevitable, catastrophic event.
In light of my own and others’ experiences, I must raise the question: do our current catastrophe insurance provisions serve our needs or is it time for a comprehensive review in favour of a system that serves the population more equitably and more efficiently? The only answer to that question that sits with me comfortably is a resounding ‘YES’ – because the current system has failed many Cantabrians very badly.
It is my hope that we citizens of Christchurch will be able to rebuild a strong and vibrant community and that as a nation we realise that planning for the inevitable must not be left to chance. If we wish to ensure the long-term successful future of Aotearoa New Zealand, we must think and act."

About the author:

Sarah Miles is has a diverse educational background having trained and worked in the following fields: law and dispute resolution (mediation); psycho­logy and gestalt psychotherapy; viticulture and oenology. She is an experienced investment banking lawyer with experience in the insurance sector. She believes in the multi-disciplinary approach to problem solving and idea creation. 
Her goal is to make her voice heard for the causes in which she believes so as to improve and contribute to a more sustainable and equitable New Zealand. Prior to the Christchurch earthquakes she ran a psychotherapy practice in Christchurch. During the recovery phase she was astounded to find that when it comes to issues of real importance to the citizens of Christchurch – such as welfare, policyholder protection, economic security and education – our politicians are conveniently deaf, dumb and blind. Her intention is to expose the current Government and the insurance industry’s failure to protect the citizens of Christchurch and draw attention to the need for change in order to ensure that there is not a repeat of the Christchurch fiasco.

Gmail: thechristchurchfiasco@gmail.com

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