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Restaurant owner adds mass shooting insurance coverage

<i>KCNC</i><br/>Jacqueline Bonanno and her husband have been in the restaurant business for 22 years.
Jacqueline Bonanno and her husband have been in the restaurant business for 22 years.

By Jamie Leary

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    DENVER, Colorado (KCNC) — For some businesses, the topic of safety carries more weight than ever before, and the concept of insurance for mass shootings is becoming a reality.

“We have a yearly conversation regarding insurance, property insurance and we were just going over our basic information and our insurance provider suggested we get this add-on which is mass causality insurance to protect us from a shooter,” said Jacqueline Bonanno.

Jacqueline Bonanno and her husband have been in the restaurant business for 22 years. Bonanno Concepts now has nine restaurants in Denver as well as the Milk Market food hall.

The company worked with Lloyd’s of London to add mass casualty coverage. Bonanno said it wasn’t a major cost to add it financially, but the cost was emotional.

“It’s horrifying. It’s horrifying to think about that, and you have to step away from the emotions and try to think about what’s right for your business and the people that you work with. I mean, it makes sense. It’s a commonsense business decision. But it’s horrifying in the emotional sense,” said Bonanno.

Mass causality insurance covers, in part, PTSD treatment as well as uncovered workers’ compensation claims.

“It protects you from the cost of shutting down your business, broken glass, light fixtures. It’s the physical tangible costs of something so awful,” said Bonanno.

The Bonannos already have a strong mental wellness program in place for their employees. That’s something employees voiced they needed through the pandemic. The mass causality coverage is an additional layer of protection for the business and the people who work there.

“Societally we should not be here but yes, of course, I will buy the insurance I will do whatever it takes to protect the people that I work with,” she said.

According to the insurance publication Property Casualty 360, this type of coverage is highly specialized and only a few companies offer quotes or have brokers experienced in writing policies for mass causality incidents. If businesses are interested in pursuing it, Property Casualty 360 recommends asking for two or three quotes and comparing the forms closely, paying special attention to the insuring agreement, the definitions and the exclusions.

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