COVID-19 Safety Plan for the Diocese of New Westminster Offices
Parish Insurance during COVID-19
With all of the churches and many other buildings within the diocese currently shut down during the COVID-19 pandemic, here is some clarification from the insurance provider (Ecclesiastical Insurance) on the matter of what effect this situation has on the insurance that is in place for all of the parish property. They have determined that the buildings of the diocese are deemed “Idle Buildings” to differentiate them from vacant buildings, which are buildings that you would have no intention to return to following the crisis. Ecclesiastical Insurance has confirmed that the current civil authority mandate for shut downs does NOT impact your policy with respect to vacancy, as they believe there is intent to resume operations as soon as Government policies permit.
We know that some parishes still have an administrator working a few days a week and we certainly recommend that if this is not the case, that you have someone designated to check on the parish buildings every few days.
Please see attached four documents to assist you in this process:
To summarize, the premises are NOT deemed to be vacant during this closure and so your normal insurance is in place. We do recommend that all parishes use their best judgment and try to incorporate these attached guidelines for managing idle buildings during the COVID-19 crisis. If there are any questions or uncertainty regarding this situation please do not hesitate to contact any of our HUB service team.