Category Archives: Corporate Social Responsibility

Insurers Respond to COVID-19 (9/2/2020)

U.S. insurers and their foundations by June 2020 had donated about $280 million in response to COVID-19, the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I) estimates based on information collected by the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF)

International insurers and their foundations donated an additional $150 million.

U.S. auto insurers have  returned more than $14 billion to their customers nationwide in response to reduced driving during the pandemic, according to a Triple-I estimate.

Individual companies are working to alleviate the crisis by donating to global relief efforts and easing the financial burden on their customers. We reported on some of these activities in April.

Below is list of what just a sample of Triple-I’s member companies have contributed to ease a wide array of community needs.

The Allstate Foundation contributed $5 million to help domestic violence victims, youth in need and first responders.

American Family Insurance, along with the American Family Insurance Dreams Foundation, announced more than $4 million in support for COVID-19 pandemic relief and other non-profit efforts. Additional support from the Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation is expected to push the total support to more than $6.8 million.

Chubb is focusing its global pandemic relief efforts on organizations that provide emergency medical supplies to healthcare facilities, to food banks helping the vulnerable and hungry, and for scientific research to treat and prevent this disease. The company announced $12.5 million in grants toward these efforts.

Liberty Mutual’s philanthropy program has committed $15 million in crisis grants to community partners helping respond to the coronavirus;  given donations to over 800 nonprofits they  partner with in their  employee volunteering program; supported employees’  donations with company gifts; and created an employee phone outreach program to call those in the community who are socially isolated.

MetLife Foundation announced that it is committing $25 million to the global response to COVID-19 in support of communities impacted by the pandemic. The grant funding from MetLife Foundation will span all regions where MetLife operates and address both short- and longer-term relief efforts. 

MAPFRE is allocating 54 million euros to support customers and suppliers. This is in addition to 5 million euros recently donated to accelerate COVID-19 research in Spain.

Nationwide Foundation is making $5 million in contributions to local and national charities to support medical and economic response efforts.

In addition to delivering $4.2 billion in savings to its customers, State Farm is donating millions to pandemic relief efforts.

The Hanover is donating $500,000 to local community nonprofits to provide pandemic-related assistance, including, $350,000 to local United Way, Boys & Girls Club and Chamber of Commerce organizations in Massachusetts and Michigan where the company employs large concentrations of employees

The Hartford committed $1 million in donations focused on responding to urgent human needs, the health care crisis and the city of Hartford through organizations that have been critical in addressing the humanitarian issues caused by this crisis.

Travelers pledged $5 million to assist families and communities across North America, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. The money goes to charities that provide essential services, pays wages and health benefits for eligible third-party contract employees, and contributes toward an employee donation matching program.

USAA has committed an additional $30 million to benefit 24 organizations assisting military families during these challenging economic times. The donation is part of USAA’s long-standing mission to support military and veterans’ families and recognizes the specific impact the health crisis has had on the military community.

Westfield Insurance will contribute nearly a million dollars toward nonprofit partners whose work became infinitely more challenging with this pandemic. The company is working with the Akron Canton Foodbank, Cleveland Foodbank, United Way of Cleveland, Feeding Medina County and Feeding America. Additionally, the Westfield Insurance Foundation is matching dollar for dollar up to $50 for every  employee who gives to a local foodbank or United Way.

Tell us how your company is contributing to the pandemic relief efforts in the comments below.

Insurers respond to COVID-19 (6/15/2020)

Industrywide, philanthropic giving in response to the COVID-19 crisis continues to increase. Using information collected by Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF), the Insurance Information Institute upgraded its earlier estimate to $280 million donated through early June by U.S. insurers and their charitable foundations in response to the pandemic. In addition, international insurers and their foundations have donated more than $150 million.

On June 15 the IICF announced a $500,000 contribution from Lloyd’s to its Children’s Relief Fund. This donation will help deliver tens of thousands of meals to vulnerable children struggling with food insecurity and help to address educational disruption, family homelessness and other risks exacerbated by the pandemic. This gift from Lloyd’s brings the IICF’s Children’s Relief pandemic campaign total to $1.1 million raised to date.

 “As the industry’s leading charitable giving platform and convenor of brokers, insurers and service providers, the IICF’s value proposition rings more clearly now than ever,” said Hank Watkins, Regional Director and President, Americas at Lloyd’s, and former Chair of the IICF Northeast Division Board of Directors. “Lloyd’s is proud to join hands with our industry colleagues in supporting the IICF’s mission and efforts to meet the needs of those in our communities left vulnerable by the pandemic crisis.”

IICF reports seeing widespread and united industry support for its crisis relief campaign, including nearly 600 individual contributors. IICF anticipates providing one million meals throughout this campaign to children and their families in need.

To learn more about the IICF Children’s Relief Fund or donate, please visit here.

Insurers Respond to COVID-19 (4/17/2020)

Auto insurance refunds

U.S. auto insurers will return more than $10 billion to their customers nationwide, according to an estimate released on April 11 by the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I).

We’ve listed many of the companies that are offering refunds in a previous post.  This week, several other auto insurers have announced refunds or credits. This is not an exhaustive list, so be sure to check with your insurer to see if they are offering refunds or credits. All premium and rate adjustments are subject to regulatory approval.

Chubb‘s auto insurance clients will receive a credit reflecting a 35% premium reduction for the months of April and May, with additional discounts for subsequent months, as the situation warrants, upon renewal. Across Chubb’s portfolio, the average credit is expected to be $110 per vehicle.

COUNTRY Financial announced that every client with a personal auto insurance policy as of April 1, 2020 will receive a 15% refund for two months of auto premium in anticipation of a decrease in driving activity in April and May.

CSAA Insurance Group is giving a 20 percent refund for two months of auto premiums, March and April 2020.

ERIE has announced that lowering personal and commercial auto rates would be the best option for providing additional relief to customers. The company estimates the total rate reduction impact to be approximately $200 million throughout the 12 states and District of Columbia where ERIE operates.

Ohio Mutual Insurance Group is offering personal auto premium credits on more than 80,000 personal auto policies for an estimated total of $6 million. Ohio Mutual is voluntarily providing a 25% personal auto premium credit that applies to an 11-week period (March 16 – May 31, 2020) for all policies in-force on May 31. Credits will be automatically applied to customers’ first invoice after June 1. Those with a balance less than the credit will receive a refund by check.

The Hanover Insurance Group announced it has created The Hanover CARES Refund, through which the company will return 15% of April and May auto premiums to its eligible personal lines customers, providing financial relief during the coronavirus pandemic.

MAPFRE Insurance announced its Staying Home Refund program, which will return 15 percent of April and May premium to its voluntary personal auto policyholders in Massachusetts, totaling over $30 million. On average, most policyholders will receive a credit of approximately $40.00. A similar credit will be provided to the company’s personal auto policyholders in its other states of operation for the same time period.

Westfield announced a 15 percent policy credit to their eligible personal auto insurance customers for three months.

Supporting communities

Chubb has announced a support program designed to help ease the financial burden of the COVID-19 pandemic on its small business clients in the United States and provide direct support to healthcare workers and other front-line responders.

Chubb’s U.S. small business clients whose policies renew between April 1 and August 1, 2020 will receive an automatic 25% reduction in the sales and payroll exposures used to calculate their premium as well as a 15% reduction in premiums for their commercial auto insurance. In addition, Chubb will purchase $1 million in gift cards from small business clients around the country, which will be donated to healthcare workers and other first responders on the front lines of the pandemic in their communities.

Fundación MAPFRE, a global nonprofit foundation created by MAPFRE, announced it will donate $2.3 million to support urgent medical and community needs across Massachusetts, as the coronavirus continues to spread. The funding is part of a global $38 million aid package by the foundation for medical providers and communities around the world.

Hanover announced customer relief measures and a commitment to contribute $500,000 to nonprofits in local communities to address needs arising from the public health crisis.

State Farm has donated $1 million and partnered with Salesforce to provide one million masks and other protective equipment to healthcare workers in areas of urgent need identified by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency). Since the start of COVID-19, State Farm has provided about $5 million in neighborhood relief across the country.

Swiss Re Group pledged to donate CHF 5 million to support the needs of people and communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic around the world. Through its non-profit grant foundation, the Swiss Re Foundation, the funds will be distributed to organizations tackling the crisis, particularly in developing countries.

The Westfield Insurance Foundation is helping communities in Northeast Ohio and across the country by donating nearly $1.5 million dollars to nonprofit partners focused on family stability and disaster recovery. These dollars will help stabilize communities and help those who need economic support. 

Insurers Respond to COVID-19 Wrap-Up (4/10/2020)

Auto insurance refunds

Auto insurers are giving refunds to their customers as people are driving less due to coronavirus shut-downs. No action is required by customers to receive credit in most cases, but Sean Kevelighan, Triple-I CEO, urged customer to reach out to their insurers. “We always recommend the customer contact the insurer and explain their individual situations. Insurers are always happy to look at individual situations and work with the customer,” he said in a Weather Channel interview.

Here are the refunds some of the major auto insurers are offering:

Allstate customers will get “Shelter-In Place Paybacks,” adding up to $600 million over the next two months. “This is fair because less driving means fewer accidents,” Tom Wilson, the company’s chair, president and chief executive officer said in a statement.

American Family will return approximately $200 million to its auto insurance customers.

Farmers auto customers will receive a 25 percent reduction in their April premiums. “We are committed to helping customers during this unprecedented time,” said Jeff Dailey, the company’s CEO. “As we continue receiving updated information in the coming weeks, we’ll assess additional ways to take care of our customers.”

The Hanover Insurance Group will return 15% of April and May auto premiums to its eligible personal lines customers. The company also announced additional customer relief measures and a commitment to contribute $500,000 to nonprofits in local communities to address needs arising from the public health crisis.

The Hartford announced its COVID-19 Personal Auto Payback Plan, which will provide customers with a 15 percent refund on their April and May personal auto insurance premiums. Over the next two months, the company will distribute approximately $50 million to its customers.

Liberty Mutual will return approximately $250 million to customers. Personal auto insurance customers will receive a 15 percent refund on two months of their auto premium.

MetLife Auto & Home customers will receive a 15% credit for April and May based on their monthly premiums. The company is also extending coverage under all personal auto insurance programs at no additional charge while customers are making deliveries in response to the crisis, effective March 20, 2020, through May 1, 2020. Additionally, MetLife Auto & Home is offering identity protection coverage to its customers.

Nationwide is giving a one-time premium refund of $50 per policy for personal auto policies active as of March 31, 2020.

State Farm announced an up to a $2 billion dividend that will go to its auto insurance customers. Customers do not need to take any action to receive this dividend, which will appear as a credit on their auto policy. On average, State Farm Mutual auto customers can expect to receive a credit of about 25 percent of premium for the time period March 20 through May 31; exact percentages will vary by state.

The Travelers Companies is giving U.S. personal auto insurance customers a 15 percent credit on their April and May premiums. Travelers will continue to assess the program as more information comes to light about the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the driving environment and auto claims.

USAA is set to return $520 million to its members for driving less during the COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders. The company said in a statement that the payment is a result of data showing members driving less during the “Stay Home, Work Safe” orders across the country.

IICF’s Children’s Relief Fund

The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) has launched a national industry-wide fundraising campaign to benefit vulnerable children. Funds raised through the COVID-19 Crisis: IICF Children’s Relief Fund will help support children at risk of food insecurity, educational disruption, family homelessness and other circumstances exacerbated by the crisis. To make a donation and support children in need, please contribute here.

The Allstate Foundation

The Allstate Foundation together with Allstate employees and agency force members, will donate resources across the nation to support communities during the COVID-19 crisis.

The Foundation is contributing $5 million to accelerate relief and recovery for domestic violence victims, youth in need, first responders and communities at large.

“It’s incredibly inspiring to see people finding ways to take care of each other,” said Elizabeth Brady, Allstate chief marketing, customer and communications officer and trustee of The Allstate Foundation. “For 68 years, The Allstate Foundation has delivered on Allstate’s promise to serve as the Good Hands – especially in a moment of need.”

The Nationwide Foundation

The Nationwide Foundation is making $5 million in contributions to local and national charities to support medical and economic response efforts.

“As communities experience impacts related to the pandemic, many non-profit organizations stand on the front lines, providing basic necessities, wellness services and support to those in need,” said Nationwide CEO and Nationwide Foundation Chairman Kirt Walker.  “Finances, staffs, programs and resources are being stretched as these non-profits not only serve their communities but feel the impact themselves. During these challenging times, we each have a responsibility, when we can, to lift those around us.”

Helping the community get through a tough time

Tough times bring out the best in many people, and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is no exception.

Citizens around the world are donating to crisis response organizations, sewing masks and gowns for medical workers, delivering groceries to homebound neighbors and boarding shelter animals.

Corporations also are rising to the occasion. MetLife (a Triple-I member company) is providing parking lots at its St. Louis office location for the local hospital, Mercy South to use for coronavirus drive-through testing.

And the MetLife Foundation has committed to donating $1 million to food banks across the U.S. to help them deal with increased demand for their services as a result of coronavirus.

Food banks face the challenge of getting shelf-stable food into people’s homes as quickly as possible, especially now that vulnerable populations, such as the elderly, have been advised to practice social distancing. In addition, food banks face greater need from families with children who no longer have access to meals at schools.

MetLife Foundation will donate funds to food banks in communities where MetLife, Inc. has a significant presence, such as the greater New York City area, Cary, N.C., Tampa, Fla., and Warwick, R.I.

“We want to help those impacted by coronavirus,” said Mike Zarcone, head of Corporate Affairs for MetLife and Chairman of MetLife Foundation. “That includes the communities where we work and live. We know that children out of school and seniors face food insecurity as a result of COVID-19, and we are committed to help.”

Prudential also is helping. Over the weekend, the Newark, N.J.-based insurer donated more than 150,000 protective face masks and respirators to the state.

The gift will benefit health workers, some of whom have complained about having to reuse surgical masks amid an increasing shortage of supplies.

“A least one New Jersey hospital” NJ.com reported, “is now down to a four-day supply of gowns and surgical masks.”

The masks and respirators, expected to provide a two-week respite for hospitals, were in storage at the company’s Newark headquarters. They had been stockpiled after the 9/11 terror attacks as part of the company’s emergency preparedness efforts.

If your company is helping those affected by the pandemic, email me at marias@iii.org and tell me about it.

Recruiting young workers through a culture of volunteerism

photo courtesy of State Farm®

Did you know that volunteering your time and expertise can make you happier and healthier? It’s been shown that unpaid work for the good of others enables people to make new friends, learn new skills and experience reduced stress levels.

And it’s not just individuals who benefit. Companies that create a culture of volunteering have better employee morale, workplace atmosphere and brand perception. A Deloitte study found that a large majority (89 percent) of employees think that companies that sponsor volunteer activities offer a better work environment. Volunteer activities were also reported to be more effective at boosting staff morale than company-sponsored happy hours, and more than three-quarters of workers said that volunteering is essential to employee well-being.

The insurance industry is no slouch when it comes to volunteering. The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) has contributed more than 300,000 volunteer hours to hundreds of community nonprofit organizations since its inception in 1994. The industry gives back to communities in significant and varied ways including pro bono and skills-sharing support to nonprofit organizations, disaster response, relief and recovery, employee-driven outreach in local communities and many other creative corporate social responsibility initiatives.

The industry is also hoping to recruit and retain workers by emphasizing the culture of volunteering. On April 10, the IICF released a white paper documenting the findings of its Millennial Ideas Summit. The summit convened in late 2018 with more than 50 young leaders and emerging talent from across the insurance industry to discuss key topics and challenges facing the industry. These included talent and recruitment of millennials; technology, innovation and change; and social responsibility, particularly the industry’s philanthropic response following natural disasters.

The paper, What Millennials Want, how are we engaging the millennial workforce, concluded that communicating to the younger workforce that insurance is a business of service and one that helps people in their times of need is critically important to millennials, who want opportunities to give back and make a difference through experiences and grassroots ways that help their communities.

April is National Volunteer Month. What is your company doing to promote volunteerism? Let us know in the comments section.

 

AIMU Volunteers help restore New York Harbor ecosystem

Volunteers from the American Institute of Marine Underwriters (AIMU) are about to have a lot of fun while helping clean up New York City waters.

On August 30th, AIMU will have its annual Volunteer Day at the New York Harbor School on Governors Island. The team will help the Billion Oyster Project, an initiative to add – you guessed it – a billion oysters to the New York Harbor by 2035.

Today, oysters are functionally extinct in the harbor due to over-harvesting, dredging, and pollution, but once oyster reefs covered over 220,000 acres of the Hudson River estuary. They provided valuable ecosystem services to the region by filtering water and providing a habitat for other marine species. A single oyster can filter about 30 to 50 gallons of water every day.  And New York City was virtually built from oyster shells.  In the 1700s many building projects depended on the mollusks’ shells for lime, and oyster carts were as ubiquitous as hot dog carts are today.

It’s fitting that AIMU is helping to keep the marine environment clean and healthy for future generations.

Sponsorship opportunities are available.

 

Tips for engaging millennials to volunteer

April is National Volunteer month, and in time with this event State Farm® has conducted an interesting survey which reveals key insights into what motivates people to volunteer.

The study found that that only 23 percent of younger millennials currently volunteer, compared to 46 percent of older millennials (those who are married, have kids, or own a home). State Farm research confirms what others have found, that younger people are looking to align their giving opportunities with their life goals.

Millennials have supplanted Baby Boomers as the largest population group in the United States, and as a result they have the biggest potential to influence volunteerism.  With that in mind the study offers several useful tips for engaging young professionals in volunteer activities:

  • Show the impact: People want to know their work was worth it. Forty-three percent of older millennials and 34% of younger millennials say seeing the impact of their time and talent reaffirms their commitment to give back.
  • Career development: Forty percent of older millennials and 35% of younger millennials said offering opportunities to help their career or job search would boost their willingness to volunteer.
  • Knowledge is power: The prospect of gaining expertise in a certain area or learning a new skill inspires more people to get involved. Forty percent of older millennials and 31% of younger millennials say this opportunity would make them more likely to volunteer.
  • The more the merrier: Both groups agree, being able to participate with friends (44% older millennials, 35% younger millennials) or meet new people (28% older Millennials, 22% younger millennials) plays a large role in their decision to volunteer. In fact, one in five millennials reported finding a significant other through volunteering!

 

For more about how the insurance industry is committed to our communities read the latest issue of I.I.I.’s Impact magazine

Open call for Fundación MAPFRE Awards for Those That Make the World a Better Place

The Fundación MAPFRE has issued an open call for awards designed to appreciate and recognize the work being carried out by people and institutions around the world that seek to improve society through outstanding actions across a number of fields.

Each prize is worth 30,000 euros so that the recipients can continue with their important work. The call for submissions is global and applications can be submitted in English, Spanish and Portuguese by candidates themselves or by other people or institutions, both private and public.

Here are the categories:

  • THE JOSÉ MANUEL MARTÍNEZ MARTÍNEZ LIFETIME AWARD FOR A PROFESSIONAL CAREER
    A recognition granted to a person who has led an exemplary professional lifetime career in the service of society and people.
    Further information
  • BEST SOCIAL ACTION INITIATIVE
    This recognition goes to a person or institution that has undertaken an outstanding and effective social initiative for the benefit of those who are most disadvantaged.
    Further information
  • BEST HEALTH PROMOTION INITIATIVE
    This award recognizes an action taken by an individual or entity to promote good health and improve people’s quality of life.
    Further information
  • BEST ACCIDENT PREVENTION INITIATIVE
    This award recognizes a significant contribution by individuals or institutions towards preventing and reducing accidents.
    Further information
  • THE JULIO CASTELO MATRÁN INTERNATIONAL INSURANCE AWARD
    This recognizes those initiatives and projects that have fostered economic stability and solidarity through Insurance and/or Social Protection.
    Further information

 

The Fundación MAPFRE is a non-profit institution created by MAPFRE, a member company of the Insurance Information Institute.

Prepared for #CyberMonday and #GivingTuesday?

With Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday rounding out the Thanksgiving holiday digital spending and giving are expected to reach record levels, which means businesses and individuals need to be prepared for cyber threats.

In 2015, Cyber Monday was the largest e-commerce sales day ever with online orders totaling $3.07 billion and experts expect this year’s total will be higher still, according to a post on the The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Above the Fold blog.

It cautions businesses to be vigilant, especially when it comes to payment card protection, and offers the following tips:

—Change your passwords and make them strong: just as you would lock the doors before leaving, lock this door too. Make sure employees know this too.

—Install software updates known as patches that your payment service provider sends you for your payment systems: install updates, just as you would on your phone, so your payment system is protected.

—Keep business information private: keep passwords, user IDs, or other details for payment systems private. Confirm an unexpected call or email separately with the supposed caller or sender before proceeding.

Even digital philanthropy can bring out cybercriminals. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), in recent years there has been substantial growth in web-based giving or mobile donations.

In fact one of the first global-scale events that brought attention to mobile donations was the 2010 hurricane that struck Haiti. The Red Cross received millions of dollars in donations from cellphone users who simply texted the word “HAITI” to a five-digit number.

While it feels good to give, the ITRC says it’s important to remember to do your homework and check out a charity before clicking on a link or responding to potentially fraudulent email requests claiming to be a part of Giving Tuesday.

One cause you might consider supporting is The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation’s Early Learning Initiative (ELI) which provides an opportunity for every young child – regardless of means – to learn to read and write.

Join your insurance industry colleagues in the worldwide #GivingTuesday movement by contributing $5 for ELI here.

Check out the Insurance Information Institute’s facts and statistics on corporate social responsibility here. The I.I.I. white paper Cyberrisk: Threat and Opportunity has the latest information on the current exposure and how insurers are responding.