There are numerous actions for municipal risk management staff to take throughout the year as part of a consistent and proactive effort to reduce liability for the local government.
Here are some key things for risk managers to address in the final quarter of the year:
Implement a workplace substance abuse program.
- Establish a written substance abuse program to address the safety, health and liability exposures to the municipality that can result from employee substance abuse in the workplace.
- Include the five standard components of a comprehensive workplace substance abuse program, which are a written policy statement, periodic supervisor training taking place every three years, periodic employee education and awareness, an employee assistance program for those who need help, and drug and alcohol testing.
- Once the program is planned, consult with an attorney to ensure that it is fair, accurate and legally defensible.
Review certificates of insurance — the documents that establish that there is an active insurance policy in force at a particular moment in time, the lines of insurance coverage and the limits of those coverages.
- Review certificates frequently, paying attention to the individual situations and scope of the work covered.
Review safety policies and procedures — for example: safety policies, accident reporting procedures and seat belt policies.
- Make sure that policies and procedures are written and available to everyone.
- Make sure there is documentation of policy and procedure enforcement.
Establish a safety and wellness committee.
- Have the committee develop, implement and maintain the municipality’s risk management and wellness program.
- Ensure the committee has written duties and responsibilities.
Create a schedule for the upcoming year’s safety and wellness committee meetings.
- Have the committee meet at least quarterly.
- Document the attendance at the meetings, and the meeting minutes.
Review loss information and identify trends.
- Use the loss history to identify risk exposures for the municipality.
- Determine what loss prevention techniques should be used to reduce the frequency or the severity of the losses identified by the information or the trends.