Community

Public meeting to push for earthquake claim change

Head of the Earthquake Commission Dame Silvia Cartwright. Photo: Supplied.

People whose lives are affected by the Seddon and Kaikoura earthquakes are being given the chance to push for change.

The repercussions of the devastating quakes are still being felt in the community today.

Head of the Earthquake Commission Dame Silvia Cartwright will be in Ward and Seddon later this month to hear first-hand about peoples’ experiences.

It is hoped the move will help pave the way forward for future practice and tackle concerns people have about the handling of their claims.

Almost 400 formal written submissions have been received about experiences with EQC.

Dame Silvia says it is vital people get the chance to be heard.

But the outcome of the inquiry will not affect individual insurance claims or outcomes.

“I appreciate it’s often not easy to revisit difficult past experiences, but I hope people will do it for themselves and for others who will face the effects of natural disasters in the future,” she says

“Some people have seen positive gains over time depending on who manages the claim, but that is still a contentious area,” she says

The independent Inquiry is tasked with making findings and recommendations as it relates to the operations, policies and service of EQC, following the Canterbury earthquakes and other natural disasters around New Zealand in recent years.

The Inquiry can find fault as it relates to EQC’s processes but will not apportion blame or revisit individual insurance claims or legal judgments.

Dame Silvia expects to report her findings and recommendations to the Governor-General by the end of 2019, and they can then be considered by the Government.

A meeting will be held on 18 June at Flaxbourne Community Hall on Ward St between 1-2pm and at Awatere Rugby Club on Seymour St between 3-4pm.

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