Savings from a decision to no longer offer a Bereavement Benefit to members will go towards a major upgrade of individual representation, workplace organising and services.

The $10,000 Bereavement Benefit was payable to families following the death of a member.

However, a recent review of all insurance policies entered into by the previous HSU leadership found that the Benefit cost $60,000 a year and its high cost could not be justified.

The younger age profile of members and fact that superannuation funds provide significantly more generous payments through their Death and TPD insurance policies were major factors in the decision.

“We believe there are better ways to support our members that are more cost-effective and that only the VHPA can provide,” said Andrew Hewat, VHPA Assistant Secretary.

“The Branch Committee of Management felt that the Bereavement Benefit, while worthwhile, was very expensive and duplicating other insurance that super funds provide as a safety net for all members.”

“We are currently in the process of updating all of our member services and the next step will be a mailout to all members in the coming weeks advising of the new arrangements,” said Andrew Hewat, VHPA Assistant Secretary.

The Bereavement Benefit ceased on 6 September when our previous policy expired.