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Religious entities drive up risk management efforts in connection with attacks

The recent attacks on services such as the mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand, have led to increased requests for insurance coverage and an increased focus on risk management, brokers and insurers says.

Although religious entities must make sure they have adequate insurance in place, they should also consider disaster management and crisis management services that insurance companies may include in some policies to help them plan and mitigate these events, experts say.

"We see an increase in these kinds of events happening in the houses of worship," said John Sutton, Tampa, Florida-based senior guarantor of commercial lines at Burns & Wilcox.

"This has primarily opened paths for dialogues to happen between insured and agents and carriers and / or brokers and wholesalers to ensure that the coverage that has historically not been purchased or even offered is now something that is at least discussed, "Mr Sutton said.

Many of the attacks are intentional and often go unreported, says Peter A. Persuitti, CEO of the religious practice of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. "They are often cultural and driven by political beliefs, especially in the world we are in now, where faith is controversial," he said.

"We get these attacks and fires and situations where churches are victims and targets for beliefs," says Mr. Persuitti. For example, officials are currently investigating what they consider "suspected" fires in three historic African American churches over the past 1

0 days St. Landry Parish, Louisiana

The random nature of the attack means that every worship service needs to be prepared, according to industry experts.

"There is no clear trend in terms of (worship) is the next. The random is frustrating. Which parish should prepare the next? The answer is that they should all, "said Ed Hancock, Merrill Chief Lawyer, Wisconsin-based Church Mutual Insurance Co., which offers specialized insurance for religious entities of all denominations as well as schools, camps, and non-profit organizations.

houses of worship, such as shooting in the Pittsburgh synagogue in October 2018, which left 11 dead and seven injured, and Christchurch, New Zealand, mosque shootings in March which resulted in 50 deaths and 50 injured serve to "Remind people that these events occur regularly, are random in nature and must be covered within their insurance programs, "said Chris Parker, focus group leader and writer at Beazley PLC in London in written answers.

First and third party liability coverage is" increasingly important ", as these events continue, according to Marty Roche, Chicago-based area assistant vice president dealing with general agent R isk lacement services Inc. "It can be defense and compensation if an insured is sued as a result of the incident," he said.

As a first step, every religious entity should make a "thorough wager" of its general responsibility policy to check whether a violent attacker or active shooter-type event is covered by that policy, Roche said.

"It may be an exception or it may be needed a complementary type policy as an active attacker policy," Mr.

Church Mutual has left catastrophic violence response protection to all of its policyholders since 2001 after Columbine High School shooting, Hancock says. In April 20, 1999, Columbine shot two college students on an attack that left 15 dead, including the perpetrators.

The coverage pays up to $ 300,000 for costs associated with a violent event, defined as an event leading to bodily injury or death or hostage situation for two or more individuals, he said. Currently offered for free, the insurer will soon start charging for this coverage, Hancock says, due to the increasing risk.

Security that a policy covers assault and battery claims is important, according to Mr. Sutton. Terrorism coverage is another potential coverage that historically may not have been considered by houses of worship, he said.

"One of the conversations I recommend that people have is what exactly it should cover and when would this coverage kick in" Mr Sutton said he added that stand-alone terrorism coverage that does not call for a terrorist incident by the federal government often kicking in the past.

"A traditional terrorist policy will not offer coverage against these documents if there is no physical damage to an insured property or if the perpetrator is not a terrorist," said Mr Parker in written comments. "Will a liability policy cover terrorist acts or attacks if it was reasonably foreseeable that the attack might have occurred?"

Due to these issues and the potential for gaps in coverage or ambiguities in traditional insurance, Beazley has created its tailor-made lethal gun protection insurance, which provides a range of prevention and crisis management services to respond to these types of attacks, he said.

Specialist policies such as active shooters and active abuse policies often include increasingly important disaster management or crisis management services, experts say.

"Traditional insurance does not necessarily provide customers with the help they need to plan or manage such a crisis. Crisis management embedded in lethal weapon protection covers customers to reduce risks and respond as efficiently as possible," Parker says. .

"Some (active attacking policies) offer preloss services and will go in place with the insured, review the buildings and talk about the various security issues they have. They can talk about what they can plan to do immediately after an event, says Roche.

Services can include how to talk to the media and to the families of the victims, almost "one step by step" "Most companies do not have experience of an active shoot or malicious attack on their premises, so these types of Services are invaluable, "said Roche.

19659002] Interest in risk management and security among religious entities is high," says Guy Russ, Deputy Head of Risk Control at Church Mutual.

The Mutual Insurer launched a awareness campaign and held nine events to educate policyholders about the measures that can be taken to mitigate the threats. "We have had over 2,000 people involved as representatives more than 1,500 organizations. Each of these events has resulted in 10-20 inquiries coming to our risk control consultants who assist organizations to create an armed intruder plan, says mr. Russ.

Over the past year, the insurance company's central office for risk control has also See more than one-third of the policyholder's inquiries pertaining to security and security in the houses of worship and more than 10% of all inquiries related to the type of security team they are to introduce, he said.

Adapting to Local Authorities and With Other Places of Worship in Society is an important part of any risk management plan, Persuitti said.

There is a need to work as a leader and to engage with your group and citizens and with the civilian authorities, he said, adds: "We cannot use as a defense we did not know … Your police, fire and rescue should be your partners. "


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