The government is promising cuts, but can they deliver?

There has been no shortage of chatter and speculation surrounding the proposed cuts to insurance premiums being promised by the current Ontario government. And while we could all use a break in the pocketbook, the essential question on everyone’s mind is simply this: Can they deliver on these proposed cuts? If so, how?

photo credit: Alejandro Mallea

Will we really see a full 15 percent cut?

At the 2014 National Insurance Board of Canada Conference (held September 21, 2014 in Ottawa, Ontario), at the session entitled “Taking the Pulse: Where are we at with auto insurance”, panelists discussed and debated whether or not the proposed 15% decrease in auto insurance premiums was truly realistic.

General consensus among panelists was that the proposed 15% decrease in auto insurance premiums would be great for consumers, and would certainly allow the current government to make good on a key part of their proposed insurance reforms, there is simply not enough room to make it happen.

In an article posted on Canadianunderwriter.ca, Barbara Sulzenko-Laurie, Vice-President of Policy Development for the Insurance Bureau of Canada, is quoted as saying:

“… in our conversations with the superintendent of insurance, he’s indicated to us that no one in FSCO believes that there’s 15% that’s in the system (to be reduced).”

For more details on this story, please click through to read the full article. If you would like to discuss how these proposed changes may impact your policy, please call or email us at insurance@roughleyinsurance.com.

Contributing to student success in our community

Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. and Simcoe Hall Settlement House are Gearing up for Back to School

It’s that time of year again when it seems everyone is gearing up for back-to-school.  The Simcoe Hall Settlement House and Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. are getting ready in a big way.

Simcoe Hall Settlement House, located in Oshawa at 387 Simcoe Street South, has begun their annual Backpacks for Success program. The program services primary, junior, high school and some college students who are going to school but may not be able to afford the supplies they need to succeed.

Lisa Storrey & Wanda Smith with folks from Settlement House

Lisa Storrey (far L), & Wanda Smith (far R) with Mark Shuwera & Pat Savage of Settlement House

“This program has been spearheaded by McGraw Hill Education, who this year collected 289 backpacks filled with school supplies. With the additional support from our friends at Roughley Insurance and other community partners, we have been able to push the number of backpacks to over 350,” said Mark Shuwera, Executive Director, Simcoe Hall Settlement House. “Each year the demand is greater.”

The team at Roughley Insurance learned of this program and reached out to contribute. The response from the community and businesses like Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. goes a long way in meeting the growing demand in the community for school supplies, especially at this time of the year.

This year, Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. contributed $1000 worth of supplies to fill the backpacks including pens, paper, duo tangs, pencil crayons, calculators and the list goes on. Lisa Storey and Wanda Smith, part of the Employee Committee at Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. were in charge of this community give back campaign.

Roughley Social Committee gives the gift of success to Oshawa students.

Roughley Social Committee gives the gift of success to Oshawa students.

“Employees just kept bringing in donations, up to the very last minute they could,” said Ms. Storey. “We have a strong connection with Simcoe Hall Settlement House. This isn’t the only initiative we participate in with them.” The response from the staff and management at Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. was overwhelming.

Jim Roughley, Owner and Broker of Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd., explained why he participates to initiatives like the Backpacks for Success Program: “I know that some students in this community simply can’t afford school supplies. Every child should be able to get an education and have the supplies they need to succeed. This is a way for me to give back to the community and help the people who need it.” Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. and the Employee Committee organizes community give back programs throughout the year.

“I was born and raised in Oshawa. I’m taken care of and I work for good people. I want to help the people in this community who weren’t given the same opportunities that I was,” said Ms. Storey when asked why she and her colleagues contribute to programs like Backpacks for Success.

People throughout the community have come to know about the Backpack for Success program from previous years. The Simcoe Hall Settlement House does not pick who the backpacks go to, but instead there is an open-call for any student who needs to take advantage of the program. Pat Savage, a long-time volunteer and coordinator of the Backpacks for Success Program with the Simcoe Hall Settlement House, works tirelessly to put together the backpacks targeted to different age groups so that everyone can get the most use from the supplies they are given.

“We do what we can for all ages,” explained Mr. Shuwera.

About Simcoe Hall Settlement House:

Simcoe Hall Settlement House is a not-for-profit community resource centre dedicated, since 1935, to assisting children, families and vulnerable adults whose lives are affected by poverty. For more information about the Simcoe Hall Settlement House and to find ways that you can contribute please visit www.simcoehall.com.

Gone Phishing?

There has been a lot of awareness generated about fraudulent activities that target seniors, usually with
telephone calls, to get them to give up personal and banking account information. In a digital age, however, anyone who spends time online is a target for ‘phishers’.

Phishing is a form of fraucyber-crime-500d that is actioned online, where the fraudster(s) pose as legitimate companies in order to access financial information. Phishing is typically carried out by email spoofing or instant messaging, and it often directs users to enter personal details – account numbers, login details, passwords – at a fake website whose look and feel are almost identical to the legitimate one. (Wikipedia)

Personal attacks are most common, but more and more businesses are now being targeted:

Businesses aren’t being attacked by computers, but by people attempting to exploit human frailty as much as technical vulnerability. It is a strategy problem, a human problem and a process problem,’’ said Steven Henderson, who leads PwC’s Canadian forensic services.

Cyber-crime is on the rise, and all industries are struggling to defend themselves. In a recent study published by PwC, one in three Canadian business admit to being the victim of economic fraud of varying degrees.

Just like telemarketers phishers are virtually impossible to stop. So what should you do if you suspect that you are being ‘phished’? On the personal side, Gord Jamieson, head of risk services at Visa Canada states that “emails shouldn’t be opened, [and] they shouldn’t be deleted until after they’re forwarded to law enforcement, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at info@antifraudcentre.ca.”

For businesses, the challenges to overcome phishing and cyber-crime are significantly increased due to the number of vulnerabilities – be it the people using technology or the software and online platforms themselves – within their systems and the fact that we have become so dependent upon technology for the daily execution of business. Tightening online security in the workplace, including adding additional layers of anti-virus and/or anti-phishing software and enforcing strict controls over internet access, is really the only option.

For more data on the impact of phishing on Canadians, please click here to read an article posted on www.globalnews.ca.

The (deadly) risks of taking your eyes off the road

DistractedDrivingWe all know that we shouldn’t do it, but at one point or another most of us are guilty of using our cellphones while driving. Although there is a complete, legal ban on the use of cellphones while operating a motor vehicle in Ontario, the threat of a fine does not appear to be enough to discourage drivers – in Ontario and across the nation – from engaging in this risky behaviour.

In her recent Globe and Mail article, Jessica Leeder reports that “distraction – caused by texting, smartphones and other forces that draw drivers’ attention off the road – is eclipsing impaired driving as the leading cause of crashes and fatalities in many jurisdictions across Canada and the United States.”

 “With the proliferation of technology, it’s hard to say what … this is going to lead to,” said Nova Scotia RCMP Constable Mark Skinner. “We know it’s a problem already. Will the problem continue to get worse?”

Although drivers of all ages are guilty of engaging in this behaviour, teens are reportedly the highest risk group. A 2013 study commissioned by the Ford Motor Co. of Canada reported the following alarming statistics:

  • 93 per cent of teens admitted to distracted driving;
  • 72 per cent admitted to using hand-held technology, such as texting, while behind the wheel; and,
  • 37 per cent admitted to e-mailing while their vehicle was in motion

To read the entire Globe and Mail article, please click here.

’tis the season… to GIVE!

At a time of year when many people are focused on figuring out what they want to GET this holiday season, the staff at Roughley Insurance chose to focus instead on what they could GIVE.

Roughley staff members Wanda Smith and Lisa Storey (r) with teachers at Glenn Street Public School

Roughley staff members Wanda Smith and Lisa Storey (r) with teachers at Glenn Street Public School

Several times each year the Roughley Social Committee organizes community giving initiatives, and for the 2013 holiday season, committee organizers reached out the Durham Children’s Aid Society as their charity of choice. With the help of the DCAS, the Roughley team “adopted” a family in need for Christmas; a mother and her two children, aged 4 & 15.

Having been given a ‘wish list’ from the family, the entire staff participated to raise enough money to purchase everything on the family’s wish list, with a few surprises thrown in for good measure.

In total the team at Roughley collectively raised over $1000 to bring joy and delight to a deserving family in our community.

Eyes on the Road

texting-while-driving2In an article first posted on Wheels.ca, columnist Henry Stancu gives a breakdown of the statistics of the alarming trend of texting and driving.

“Talking on the phone, texting or using any hand-held device while driving is against the law — but many of us still do it.

In fact, more than 90 per cent of Canadian drivers surveyed confess they do.

But motorists in Ontario may soon be facing stiffer penalties, which could include demerit points along with the current $155 fine for the offence, as the provincial government considers bringing in new legislation.

Transportation Minister Glen Murray told CTV news this week that the government acknowledges everyone is using a handheld device and it’s time to re-examine the penalties relating to their use on the road. …”

Click here to read the full article as seen on www.wheels.ca.

Adult children worried about senior parents' driving, but often unwilling to discuss it

2013-10-01


More than half of adult children of seniors included in a new survey said they were concerned about their parents’ driving abilities, but far fewer are actually having conversations about it.

Liberty Mutual Insurance in the U.S. reported that 55% of “baby boomers” expressed concern over their senior parents’ driving, but only 23% are having conversations with their parents about it. Further, 29% said they are likely to avoid the conversation entirely.

“Nine in 10 boomer children of senior drivers think it is important to have driving conversations with their aging parents, but few are taking action – thus, not addressing potential safety risks on the roads,” noted David Melton, driving safety expert with Liberty Mutual Insurance and managing director of global safety.

Boomer children cite the following as top concerns associated with their senior parents” driving:

  • Poor eyesight: 47%
  • Drives too slow: 38%
  • Poor hearing: 30%
  • Drives distracted: 25%

Those concerns are valid, Liberty Mutual says, with 17% of all U.S. traffic fatalities happening to older individuals, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. In 2011, 5,401 people aged 65 and older were killed and 185,000 were injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes.

Still, less than half (38%) of boomer children of senior drivers think that their parents will understand and be open to a discussion about giving up driving, according to Liberty Mutual.

Most of the boomer children fear the outcome will be negative, predicting the following reactions:

  • 46% think their parents will be angry or hurt
  • 31% think their parents will say it is too hard to find other modes of transportation
  • 22% think their parents will be more determined to keep driving

“Aging is an inevitable occurrence that has several implications,” added Melton. “It”s important that we recognize that age can bring changes that impact one”s driving abilities. Each individual situation is unique, which is why Liberty Mutual Insurance encourages boomer children to talk openly with their parents about driving.”

Original Article: http://www.canadianunderwriter.ca/news/adult-children-worried-about-senior-parents-driving-but-often-unwilling-to-discuss-it/1002630155/?ref=rss&ctid=1002630155

Winning one for Their Opportunity Kids

A huge thank you goes out the Their Opportunity Minor Sports Corporation, for once again putting on a tremendous ball

Team Roughley winners of the 2013 Their Opportunity Ball Hockey Tournament

hockey tournament benefiting the children of our community and our region. The 2013 event drew players from across Du kan ogsa finne noen norske spill som for eksempel Mega Joker og Jackpot 6000 pa dette casinoet . the GTA, and our very own Shane Terry brought a team to represent Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. in the tournament.

With an emphasis on fun, Team Roughley, along with their Their Opportunity Kid Dominic Clarke, nonetheless brought the heat and ended up winning the tournament. A win by Team Roughley means that Dominic will receive sponsorship from Their Opportunity for the next two hockey seasons. Congratulations Dominic!

Ready for School

The staff of Roughley Insurance Brokers Ltd. pulled together once again to support students in the local community.

Roughley staff members Wanda Smith and Lisa Storey (r) with teachers at Glenn Street Public School

After reaching out to the staff and administration of Glenn Street Public School, it was determined that while they receive donation for the primary students, the intermediate level students could use a little help.

Working, and giving, together, the members of the Roughley Employee Committee collected funds to be able to fill 20 full-sized backpacks with items like binders, calculators, geometry sets, paper, pens, etc. These backpacks were distributed to Grade 7 & 8 students ensuring that they are ready to face the year with all the tools they need to be as successful as they can be.

 

4 Ways to Lower Your Auto Insurance Costs

Insurance FoldersThere are a slew of ways to reduce your auto insurance costs besides being a good driver—all you have to do is ask.

“Some discounts are to encourage customers to buy with the company and some discounts are because the risk to the insurance company is reduced,” says David Thompson of the Florida Association of Insurance Agents. However, he says if you want the discount, you have to ask for it.

Safety Equipment Discounts

These days most new cars come standard with safety features that not only protect the drivers in an accident, but can save on auto insurance.

According to the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, drivers can get discounts if their cars are equipped with anti-theft devices, anti-lock brakes and/or passive restraint systems like airbags.

Other safety features that can yield savings include traction control and daytime running lights. And the savings add up: At AllState, airbags and motorized seatbelts can slash up to 30% off a bill, anti-lock brakes can get a 10% discount and an anti-theft device can save up to 10%.

Read the complete article >>