The Christchurch Fiasco: the Insurance Aftershock and its Implications for New Zealand and Beyond was presented to Dunmore Publishing a few months ago for printing prior to the year’s end.
The book was launched last Friday evening at the New Brighton Public Library- a fitting venue as New Brighton really represents the worst of earthquake affected areas and a community struggling to get back on its feet after the devastating earthquakes of 2010-2012.
Friday was an appalling day weather-wise. In fact it rained cats and dogs for the best part of an entire day. We picked the publisher of Dunmore Publishing (Sharmian Firth) up in town, she had travelled down from Auckland to celebrate the occasion. Unfortunately the weather was so bad it was hardly worth driving her round to show her what Christchurch looks like these days. Though we did manage to drive down town briefly which was enough to give her an idea of the devastation that has taken place. You realize when you show people round that it is not until they see the place for themselves that the reality and enormity of what has happened here can be fully registered.
Luckily by five o’clock the rain had settled somewhat. There was a good crowd present – friends and invited guests. The publisher opened the event followed by the Hon. Lianne Dalziel and Rev Mike Coleman. Clips of their speeches can be seen via these links:
https://vimeo.com/55403128 (Lianne Dalziel)
https://vimeo.com/55396555 (Mike Coleman)
My husband and a representative from Insurance Watch, David Stringer, also spoke.
It is now Thursday, the launch is over and a new kind of normal begins- phone calls, interviews, meetings with locals with more incredible insurance stories to hear and share. It is time these stories were shared and discussed and the truth about the industry as we’re experiencing it – told.
My focus is not just about events happening in Christchurch on a day to day basis but the realization that Christchurch will form the model for the next major catastrophe in New Zealand- it is for this reason too, that it is critical that we discuss the events that have transpired here, talk about how we can do it better and create a model that will adequately protect the property interests of the citizens of New Zealand going forward- lest we have a repeat of the Christchurch Fiasco.