There was a time when the Chester Housing Authority (CHA) faced constant lawsuits related to slips and falls. But like so many of the legacy issues that once plagued CHA, the non-stop lawsuits have now slowed to a trickle.
HAI Group, an organization that serves the public and affordable housing community with niche insurance programs and other value-added products and services, has presented CHA with its Low Loss Achievement Award, an honor recognizing the relatively small number of personal injuries that occur on CHA property.
The award marks the second consecutive three-year period for which CHA was recognized.
“The safety of our residents is always our top concern,” said CHA Executive Director Steven A. Fischer. “Being safe means protecting our communities from crime but it also means maintaining our properties in a manner that makes accidents less likely. I (offer) special recognition to Director of Housing Operations Norman Wise and the maintenance staff for their diligence in improving site conditions.”
The award covers a three-year period and takes into account the number of claims and how much the claims were settled for.
“We look at the costs of claims the housing authority received compared to the premiums they paid to arrive at a loss ratio,” said Elizabeth Owens, director of Risk Control and Consulting at HAI Group.
HAI Group is a member-owned company that gives housing authorities that do a good job of preventing losses a dividend, calculated once a year. In effect, this means lower insurance costs for CHA, allowing the agency to use more of its resources for housing.
“The better CHA performs, the lower the costs they’re going to have on their insurance. The numbers show CHA is taking that responsibility to heart,” Owens said. “Residents should feel reassured that they live at a property where chances are lower they will be injured in an accident.”
Liability insurance covers residents, visitors and vendors injured on CHA sites. Employee injuries are handled through workers compensation.
“When you consider all the snow and ice we encountered last winter and our speed in clearing common areas and sidewalks, you get a sense of our priority for keeping people safe – and keeping our insurance costs down,” Fischer said. “The recognition from HAI Group validates our resolve.”