A new policy aimed at helping farmers, fishermen, taxi operators and small business owners recover faster after a disaster is being introduced to the British Virgin Islands.
This initiative is called the Livelihood Protection Policy (LLP) and it offers swift insurance payouts to its policyholders after an aggressive weather event.
Under LLP, which is being introduced through the Climate Risk Adaptation & Insurance in the Caribbean (CRAIC) project, persons affected by losses are “guaranteed” to receive direct payments within seven to 14 days of impact.
According to Tara James of the CRAIC, the policy was designed to be a considerably quicker alternative to the traditional insurance.
The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) – who, in conjunction with the Ministry of Natural Resources, hosted four days of meetings to discuss the introduction of the policy – said LPP ‘provides products that use satellite measurements to gather data of local rainfall and wind speeds during periods of heavy rains and storms’.
“The system is set to measure rainfalls and winds in varied parts of the territory allowing them to identify when weather conditions have exceeded the normal threshold. Once the threshold is breached, a payout is automatically given to policyholders without filing claims of damage,” the DDM said in a media release.
The DDM further said the LPP already has been introduced in other countries in the region such as St Lucia and Jamaica. However, preparations will be made to develop LLP products that are specifically tailored to the BVI market.
At least one local farmer has expressed support for the policy.
There have been widespread complaints about traditional insurers since the hurricanes. There have also been specific complaints that traditional insurers do not cater to the needs of local farmers and fisherfolk.
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