2013 Australian Natural Disasters
Customer assistance package
If your home, income or business has been affected by recent natural disasters across Australia and you need financial support, we encourage you to make contact.
Please call our dedicated financial hardship team 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 13 13 14. ANZ Insurance can be contacted on 13 16 14.
Available relief measures for customers affected by bushfires and floods include:
- suspending loan repayments;
- waiving fees associated with restructuring business loans considered necessary due to bushfire impacts;
- considering temporary adjustments to customer lending limits including credit cards to assist you to cope financially with unexpected costs arising from the fires; and
- waiving fees associated with replacement of damaged business EFTPOS/credit card terminals.
Find out more about our financial hardship assistance.
Tasmania Bushfire Appeal
The Australian Red Cross has launched an appeal to help the relief and recovery efforts of communities affected in Tasmania. ANZ has donated $100,000 to this appeal.
If you would like to donate to Tasmanian relief efforts you can support the Australian Red Cross appeal.
Funds raised through the Tasmanian Bushfires 2013 Appeal will be used to assist individuals, families and communities directly affected by the January 2013 Tasmanian bushfires.
Australian Red Cross will not deduct any funds from public donations for appeal or administration costs. Should the funds raised exceed the amount required, Australian Red Cross will use any excess funds to assist in future disasters in Australia. All interest earned on donations will be invested back into the Appeal. The funds raised will be distributed through an independent committee which will involve community input. All donations over $2 are tax deductible.
How we respond to natural disasters
Our stakeholders have told us that we have an important role to play in helping our customers and communities manage and recover from natural disasters.
We understand that natural disasters can have severe consequences for individuals, businesses and local communities.
Our Disaster Relief and Recovery Policy aims to deliver an efficient, coordinated and proportionate response to disasters particularly as our business grows in the Asia Pacific region. The policy builds on our values of integrity, collaboration, accountability, respect and excellence. It prioritizes:
- meeting the needs of our customers and looking after our staff
- focusing on the geographic regions of strategic importance to our business
- supporting our Group-wide corporate responsibility framework.
Our support for communities affected by disasters includes a package of relief measures for customers, measures to support staff, and support for organisations involved in the response, e.g. promoting appeals and donations. We are also keen to help longer-term recovery where we can, including financial advice and planning for recovering local businesses and a volunteering program for our staff to assist with community rebuilding.
We encourage any customer impacted by a disaster to contact our financial difficulty team, local branch or relationship manager to discuss how we can support them during their recovery.
Fortunately, this year did not witness the level of humanitarian disasters that marked our Region in 2010 and 2011. However, there were still significant events that affected our people and their communities.
Severe flooding in Western Fiji in early 2012 and in the Philippines, particularly around Manila, in August resulted in loss of life and caused disruptions to economies and our operations. In both cases, local governments declared states of emergency.
ANZ quickly launched Employee Financial Assistance Programs for our staff, drawing on the successful program developed for ANZ staff impacted by the 2010 Queensland floods.
The assistance packages included special leave arrangements as well as financial grants for severely impacted staff. We also provided support to communities in need, including staff volunteering in the many areas where significant clean-up and repair efforts were needed.
In addition to our direct assistance to employees, loan repayment suspensions for customers and other foregone costs, we contributed $0.6 million to supporting the communities impacted by these events.
Recent events in Australia, New Zealand, our Pacific region and Japan have shown us how natural disasters can take us by surprise and leave our people and communities feeling shocked and unprepared, for both the event, and the recovery afterwards.
This year, we created ‘Being Prepared’ booklets for all ANZ staff globally to help them to prepare for and respond to unexpected events, such as natural disasters, at home and at work. Two versions of the guide have been made available, one for employees and one for line managers. Translated versions of these booklets have been created and disseminated where necessary.
In 2011, ANZ committed more than A$3.7 million to assist relief and recovery efforts and matching of staff donations. We worked with local partners to deliver timely, effective and appropriate support to our employees, customers and communities impacted by natural disasters.
Significant natural disasters in our region this year highlighted the important role we can play supporting relief and recovery efforts in times of need.
|Case study: ANZ supports rebuilding of learning centre in Minami Sanriku in Northeastern Japan|
ANZ is supporting long term recovery measures to help rebuild Minami Sanriku in Northeastern Japan which was impacted by the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
We are helping to build a new civic Life-Long Learning Centre with a library, seminar and study rooms for the local community to use. It will be the first permanent building to be rebuilt in the town after the earthquake and tsunami that struck Great East Japan in March.
The learning centre will support community activities, children’s education and generate local employment. In the long-term it will be an interactive space for extra-curricular programs and after-school care.
“ANZ is very pleased to be able to fund such an important project. Our volunteer teams will continue to visit Minami Sanriku in 2012 to see the progress made”, said Robert Bell, CEO Japan.
|Case study: ANZ supports long term recovery efforts in Emerald after the Queensland floods|
In late December 2010, ANZ made a $1 million donation in response to the flood crisis which included a $500,000 donation to the Queensland Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal and a $500,000 donation towards long term recovery programs.
One of the long term recovery programs supported by ANZ includes a $100,000 donation to the Emerald & District Social Development Association.
The Association will use the funds to support community groups such as the Emerald Neighbourhood Centre which provides counseling and housing services as well as the provision of food and clothing.
ANZ District Manager for Capricorn and Coast, Queensland, Jacqueline Walsh said: “As part of our commitment to Queensland’s long term recovery, we engaged local councils in the affected areas to discuss the projects which require funding support. Emerald was completely devastated by the floods earlier in the year and the community still needs as much help as possible to get back on its feet,” said Ms Walsh.
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