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WeCAN vs. Tower Insurance

Case overview

Date filed 11 November 2013
Current status Filed
Issue Damaged homes after 2011 earthquakes in New-Zealand
Summary of the case In September 2010 and February 2011, four major earthquakes and an estimated 13,000 aftershocks devastated the Canterbury region, which includes New Zealands second largest city, Christchurch. The earthquakes resulted in 185 deaths and injured 11,432 people.

Multiple complainants have alleged that the Earthquake Commission, Southern Response, IAG New Zealand, Tower Insurance, and Vero Insurances failure to resolve insurance claims more than three years after the earthquakes has violated their rights to health and adequate housing in accordance with the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights. Multiple complainants have also alleged that Fletcher Construction has not started repairs, not completed repairs, or has inadequately repaired earthquake-damaged homes and has thus violated their rights to health and adequate housing as well.
Developments/Outcome The NZ NCP rejected the complaint against the Earthquake Commission and Southern Response as it considers that they are not multinational enterprises. The complainants disagree with these grounds for rejection, citing the Guidelines assertion that “multinational and domestic enterprises are subject to the same expectations in respect of their conduct” under the Guidelines.

In December 2014, the NCP completed its initial assessment and accepted the case against Arrow. The NCP has requested additional documentation to substantiate the allegations in the other cases before proceeding with the initial assessment. The complainants are currently compiling the requested evidence.
Relevant OECD Guidelines
Case keywords Human rights, Financial sector

NCP Information

NCP name National Contact Point New Zealand
NCP address P.O.Box 1473 Wellington, New Zealand
NCP website http://oecd-multinat.med.govt.nz
Other NCPs involved

Complainant

Company Information

Company responsible Tower Insurance Limited
Company address
Company website
Company in violation
Country of operations New Zealand
Other companies involved

Timeline of developments

Date Actor Action Description Document
1 January 2014 National Contact Point New Zealand letter NCP requests for more information from the complainants. download pdf (1085Kb)  
11 November 2013 Wider Earthquake Community Action Network file WeCAN filed complaint at NCP  

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