RSA Canada employees from coast to coast come together to help clean up Canada’s shoreline for wildlife

More than 185 employees from RSA Canada took part in the company’s first-ever Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup campaign earlier this week.

A conservation initiative of the Vancouver Aquarium and WWF-Canada, the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup provides Canadians with the opportunity to rehabilitate shorelines and create healthier water ecosystems for people and wildlife, one piece of trash at a time.

RSA’s Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup events took place in nine cities across the country. Employees across RSA and Johnson offices worked together in teams to pick up garbage from various locations where water met land.

The teams worked together to clean up shores in the following locations:

  • Vancouver – Burrard Inlet at Portside Park
  • EdmontonEmily Murphy Park
  • Calgary – Elbow River at Stampede Park
  • GTAMarilyn Bell Park
  • Québec CityParc de la rivière du Berger
  • Sherbrooke – Magog River at Boisé de la Sauvagine
  • Montréal – Canal Lachine – Pont Lafleur
  • St. John’s – Quidi Lake
  • Halifax – Frenchman Lake

“Participating in the cleanup with colleagues was an enjoyable team-building exercise,” said Molly MacInnis in RSA Canada’s Toronto office. “Encouraging us to participate in initiatives that are important to us on a personal level is a testament to RSA’s belief in the benefits of integrating employee engagement and corporate responsibility initiatives.”

At the end of each day, each region also weighed and tallied how much trash had been cleaned up, participated in an important discussion about the items they found, and reflected on what they learned from the experience. Among the most interesting and unusual items picked up was an onion, a jar of pickles and a shopping cart. In total, pounds of litter was picked up before it had the chance to get into the water where it can harm fish, whales, turtles, shorebirds and other aquatic wildlife.

“RSA Canada is proud to participate in this initiative in partnership with WWF-Canada and the Vancouver Aquarium. We know how important it is to keep our shorelines, parks and lakes clean in order to preserve Canada’s wildlife,” says RSA President and CEO, Martin Thompson. “The five-year partnership with WWF-Canada is helping us inspire and engage employees in workplaces across Canada to take environmental action, through activities like the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.”

Every year, tens of thousands of Canadians take action against shoreline litter by participating in the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup one of the largest direct action conservation programs in Canada. Now in its 24th year, the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup has collected more than 1.2 million kilograms of trash across Canada with the help of over 700,000 volunteers.

To participate in a Shoreline Cleanup near you or to learn more about this important initiative, please visit www.shorelinecleanup.ca.

For more information about RSA Canada, visit www.rsagroup.ca or check us out on Twitter at @RSACanada.

About RSA
With a 300 year heritage, RSA is a multinational quoted insurance group. Focusing on general insurance, RSA’s core markets are the UK & Ireland, Scandinavia and Canada, with the capability to write insurance business across the globe.  RSA’s core businesses have approximately 13,500 employees with net written premiums of £6.3bn in 2016.

About RSA Canada
The RSA Canada group of companies includes Roins Financial Services Limited, Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada, Quebec Assurance Company, Johnson Inc., Unifund Assurance Company, Western Assurance Company, Ascentus Insurance Ltd., Canadian Northern Shield Insurance Company and RSA Travel Insurance Inc. (collectively, “RSA Canada”) and is part of a group of companies headed by RSA Insurance Group Plc. RSA Canada employs more than 3,000 people across Canada and is one of the oldest insurance companies in the country with roots dating back to 1833.

©2017 Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. All rights reserved. RSA, RSA & Design and related words and logos are trademarks and the property of RSA Insurance Group plc, licensed for use by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. RSA is a trade name of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada.

About WWF-Canada & RSA Canada’s partnership
In March 2016, WWF-Canada and RSA Canada kicked off a new five-year partnership to inspire and engage employees in workplaces across Canada to take environmental action. With this partnership, RSA became the new presenting sponsor of Living Planet @ Work, WWF-Canada’s environmental employee engagement program. In doing so, RSA demonstrates and promotes the benefits of integrating employee engagement and corporate responsibility initiatives.

Through this partnership, WWF-Canada is supporting RSA to develop a robust national green team program in order to engage employees coast to coast to take action on sustainability.

This partnership supports RSA Canada’s corporate responsibility commitments to reduce the carbon emissions from our internal operations by 12 per cent per employee by 2018 (2015 baseline) as well as support our customers with tools and solutions to better respond to changing environmental risks and opportunities.

About World Wildlife Fund Canada
WWF-Canada creates solutions to the environmental challenges that matter most for Canadians. We work in places that are unique and ecologically important, so that nature, wildlife and people thrive together. Because we are all wildlife. For more information, visit wwf.ca.

About the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup
The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, presented by Loblaw Companies Limited, is one of the largest direct action conservation programs in Canada. A conservation initiative of the Vancouver Aquarium and WWF, the Shoreline Cleanup aims to promote understanding of shoreline litter issues by engaging Canadians to rehabilitate shoreline areas through cleanups. www.ShorelineCleanup.ca

Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre
The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre is a non‐profit society dedicated to the conservation of aquatic life. www.vanaqua.org

SOURCE RSA Canada

“It Is Not Necessary To Call Expert Evidence On Each Issue”

In recent years expert evidence has become more common in injury litigation and it is not unusual to see litigants sometimes err on the side of overkill.  To this end helpful comments were recently released by the BC Supreme Court, Kelowna Registry, highlighting this practice and reminding litigants expert evidence can be used judiciously.

In the recent case (Truax v. Hyrb) the parties were involved in a collision and fault was at issue.  The Defendant brought an application seeking a dismissal of the lawsuit and argued that the Plaintiff failing to adduce expert engineering evidence should lead to an adverse inference.  In rejecting this suggestion Mr. Justice Dley provided the following comments about the over-use of expert evidence:

[20]         The defence argues that the failure by the plaintiff to introduce engineering evidence of the collision is “telling” and that an inference should be drawn against Mr. Truax. I agree that the absence of engineering evidence is telling – there is no need to call such expert evidence when common sense prevails.

[21]         Litigation has become a costly venture; oftentimes unnecessarily so. Litigants are far too quick to secure expert testimony when it is not required. Perhaps that is out of an abundance of caution and concern that the absence of expert evidence will be a failing of counsel.

[22]         Each case should be considered on its unique circumstances. It is trite to say that it is not necessary to call expert evidence on each issue. Expert testimony should be restricted to those matters where it would actually assist the court because the evidence is so specialized, scientific or complex. Expert evidence should not be viewed as a default or automatic step in litigation strategy.

 

$75,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Aggravation of Chronic, Disabling Pre-Existing Condition

Reasons for judgement were published today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for a collision which aggravated long-standing pre-existing health complications.

In today’s case (Cheema v. Khan) the Plaintiff was disabled since 2003 due to arthritis and depression.  She was involved in a 2012 collision that the Defendants admitted fault for.  The collision aggravated her pre-existing issues.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $75,000 Chief Justice Hinkson provided the following reasons:

[103]     There is no question that Ms. Cheema was unemployable after 2003. She had been on long-term disability from employment as a linen worker since 2004 due to rheumatoid arthritis and major depressive disorder. She was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in the 1990s. The pain was in her neck initially, followed by bilateral hand pain since 2000. Her rheumatoid arthritis affected her hands, wrists, feet, ankles and shoulders. In the month preceding the Collision, the plaintiff had a flare up of her rheumatoid arthritis. Since 2000, the plaintiff had also suffered from longstanding, severe and chronic major depressive disorder, chronic anxiety and panic attacks leading up to the Collision.

[104]     I am unable to accept the plaintiff’s submission that her condition prior to the Collision was stable. She suffered from severe rheumatoid arthritis, Morton’s neuromas and a severe major depressive disorder prior to the Collision, and these conditions compromised her ability to ambulate, cook, clean and perform other household activities. I am satisfied that the plaintiff’s severe rheumatoid arthritis and severe depression waxed and waned prior to the Collision, but overall were worsening, and would have continued to worsen even if she had not been involved in the Collision.

[105]     I find, however, that the Collision caused an aggravation of her pre-Collision neck, back and shoulder pain and headaches, and likely had a negative effect on the symptoms arising from her rheumatoid arthritis.

[106]     I conclude that the plaintiff’s neck, back and shoulder pain and headaches were worsened by the Collision and that without the accident she would not have suffered from those difficulties as much as she has for the four years that have followed the Collision.

[107]     I accept the evidence of Dr. Shuckett that stress has a negative effect on someone suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, and has had such an effect on the plaintiff and accelerated the progress of her disease.

[108]     I am also persuaded that the Collision had a negative effect on the plaintiff’s psychiatric state that has resulted in a downward spiralling effect causing the plaintiff to brood about her physical condition and limit her activities, in turn worsening her depression, in turn compromising her participation in certain activities and so on…

[133]     I assess the plaintiff’s non-pecuniary damages at $75,000.

N.S. sends teen suicide expert to Cape Breton, promises new cyberbulling law

By Brett Bundale

THE CANADIAN PRESS

HALIFAX _ As a Cape Breton school board grapples with multiple teen suicides, the Nova Scotia government is sending a youth mental health expert to the grief-stricken community and promising new anti-cyberbullying legislation this fall.

Dr. Stan Kutcher, a Dalhousie University psychiatry professor, will travel to Cape Breton Monday to talk to families, schools, and the community about mental health concerns and what supports they need.

He is expected to report back to the province in the coming weeks.

The parents of a 13-year-old girl who took her own life on Father’s Day said bullying led to her death, and more needs to be done to protect other young people. They said their daughter, Madison Wilson, was subject to verbal abuse at school and through social media.

Premier Stephen McNeil said the province needs to have a broader conversation about bullying, especially online attacks.

“I can’t imagine how some of these young kids who are exposed to that are feeling,” he said Thursday. “We need to have a public conversation about what’s happening online. Our children can’t get away from it.”

McNeil said he hopes the province will engage the public in a broader conversation when it rolls out its updated anti-cyberbullying legislation.

Nova Scotia’s Cyber-Safety Act, the first law of its kind in Canada designed to protect victims of online harassment, was struck down in late 2015 after the province’s top court ruled that it infringed on Charter rights.

The law was passed in response to the death of Rehtaeh Parsons, a 17-year-old girl who was bullied and died after a suicide attempt.

Justice Minister Mark Furey said Thursday the recent suicides in Cape Breton, with at least one tied to cyberbullying, underscore the importance of the new legislation.

“We’re positioned now to introduce legislation this fall,” he said.

Furey said he hopes Kutcher, an expert on adolescent mental health, will be able to inform the province on what steps can be taken to support the community.

“Dr. Kutcher is a recognized mental health expert so his presence and participation in the discussion in Cape Breton will help the families, the school and the community deal with these tragic circumstances,” he said.

Darren Googoo, chairman of the Cape Breton Victoria Regional School Board, said this week the board is drafting a letter to the provincial Education Department with the idea of starting a dialogue on the issue.

“Our students are dealing with the trauma associated with the loss of a schoolmate and, going into the summer months, we want to make sure that we have a more co-ordinated approach with our provincial partners in health, in terms of providing services,” Googoo said.

Education Minister Zach Churchill said the province needs to “work together” to better understand the factors that contribute to teen suicides.

“We do have a collective responsibility to better understand these things, to learn from them and do our very best to improve the supports available,” he said. “We need to have an honest, open and frank conversation.”

However, it’s unclear whether additional resources, such as guidance counsellors or psychologists, will be made available.

In fact, Health Minister Randy Delorey said the province put additional resources in place for schools but it’s up to the board to decide “where exactly the resources are being allocated.”

He said questions about “how they’re choosing to spend their resources” are better directed to the school board.

However, he did admit that mental health is an area of priority for the province that requires more attention.

Life insurance: the ultimate in financial #adulting?

Life insurance: the ultimate in financial #adulting?

Millennials have plenty to worry about when it comes to financial #adulting. From paying off student debt and managing day-to-day expenses to buying a house and starting a family, these new financial responsibilities can be overwhelming.

A recent survey by TD revealed another gap in millennials’ financial picture: life insurance. According to the survey, more than half (55%) of millennials do not have any life insurance, although one-third have thought about it, particularly when it comes to ensuring their loved ones are taken care of should the worst happen.

“As millennials are in the midst of this new life stage, it’s clear that they want to protect their families and loved ones,” says Mark Hardy, Senior Manager of Direct Life & Health, TD Insurance. “But with so many other financial responsibilities it can be daunting to know where to start.”

The survey revealed that these other financial priorities, including paying down their debt (25%) and saving for a house (21%), were much higher on the ‘to do’ list with life insurance lowest on the list.

While millennials said the top barrier to purchasing life insurance was the cost (55%), more than a third (37%) said they haven’t purchased life insurance because they don’t have any dependents.

“There’s no doubt that getting married or becoming a parent is a key life event when people realize the importance of having life insurance,” adds Hardy. “Less understood is that the younger you are when you buy life insurance, the less you’ll pay for your coverage and your premiums will not increase for the term you choose.”

What millennials might also find surprising is that the cost of life insurance breaks down to less than a cup of coffee a day, over a 10-year period.

“For folks starting a family – or those who already have young families or dependents – who don’t yet have life insurance, now is the time to make it a priority because this is the period when your financial obligations are really growing and you need that peace of mind,” says Hardy.

The survey also revealed that while most millennials said that life insurance is best to cover one-time costs, such as funerals (68%), many don’t realize that it can assist with so much more. Day-to-day living expenses, mortgage payments, lost income, and student loans are all areas where having life insurance can help relieve the financial pressure on those left behind.

Figuring out how much life insurance one needs is also easy with TD’s Right Fit Coverage Assessment tool.

“Before making any decisions about life insurance, it’s important to start by researching your options and speaking to an insurance advisor to learn what insurance will best fit your unique situation,” says Hardy. “That way you can be assured peace of mind for you and your family.”

About the TD Survey

Results are based on an online survey of 1,000 Canadian adults (aged 18yrs+), conducted May 8 – 12, 2017, by Environics Research Group.

About TD Insurance

TD Insurance offers a wide range of products to help protect customers including credit protection, auto, home, health, life, and travel insurance. With more than 4.5 million customers, TD Insurance authorized products and services are available through a network of more than 1,150 TD Canada Trust branches, the Internet, and telephone. TD Insurance represents all of the personal lines insurance entities within TD Bank Group. For more information, visit www.tdinsurance.com.

SOURCE TD Bank Group

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