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Thursday, February 28, 2008

If it isn't broke...then don't fix it.

If it isn't broke...then don't fix it. Over 150 firefighters in the City of Roanoke subscribe to AFLAC insurance - either cancer, long term disablity, or Intensive Care (I believe those are the three offered). The firefighters like the coverage, as do hundreds of other Roanoke City Employees.

Recently, AFLAC was given the boot and the City brought in BCI to "communicate" the new insurance coverage. When the 5 individuals came to my station they stated they worked for BCI and/or Empower and were only there to "communicate" the insurance to us.

I am not taking this time to talk about the fact that the Human Resources openly handed out our information, I will do that later.

What I would like to do is offer you some insight as to what I have found on the Internet about Unum, Empower, BCI, and whoever else is related. I might add that these are internet articles and I have no way of knowing the credibility of the articles.

Unum aka Unum Provident - The website states "We are a company of people serving people. When you choose Unum as your employee benefits provider, you're in the hands of 10,000 people dedicated to providing better benefits to organizations of all sizes and their employees."

On Wikipedia, it states "Unum garnered media attention in 2002 after attorneys who had sued the company went to national television outlets claiming the company had quotas for closing claims."

Here is another article on Unum - "Unum was recently forced by state regulators to reopen 290,000 disability insurance claims that had been rejected, including a case where 'Unum insisted that a man who had quintuple bypass surgery was fit to go back to his job at a stock brokerage firm, even though his doctors said the stress might kill him' and where Unum 'refused benefits to a man who had had multiple heart attacks'[7]."

Here are some personal experiences with Unum.

Empower - The domain was recently purch

This article talks about Empower purchasing BCI. "The Empower Group Ltd., the global organization and performance consultancy founded in 2000, today announced that it has acquired Bowker Consulting International (BCI), one of the world's leading strategic compensation and benefit practices."

BCI - Bowker Consulting International - The domain is not registered.

Really and truthfully, this whole thing is a mess. The City hired Empower to figure out what insurance would be the best. Empower did that and is now signing people up for the insurance.

Unum was the chosen insurance along with Liberty Mutual. Liberty Mutual had a local rep deliver the product and a lot of us already had the insurance.

The fact of the matter is that the City had a benefit that the employees were happy with. Of all the benefits, this one was adequate unlike so many others. So what does the City do? Get rid of it and replace it with a less than appealing alternative.


Anonymous said...

Rhett, I think you might be mistaken about Aflac providing long term disability.I think they do have some short term products, but I have never heard the Aflac guy pitching these at city cluster meetings.

Anonymous said...

Aflac has many programs but they can only pitch the ones the city approves

Anonymous said...

But AFLAC has never brought around a little huny like April Fox to pitch their product. While she was at our station, she showed alot of interest in our apparatus and even said she was affiliated with and that they were just the greatest, ran 300 calls per month and had lots of money and bought new apparatus every year. Well I checked out the site and from what I saw she was either lying or just plain stupid. Why would I want to purchase anything from a company that has her as a representative and lying like this. Ya'll check it out and see if I am lying or not.

Check out the site. Hell, they are worse off the the county FD.