Tuesday , August 16 2022

Families of dead crash victims should get bigger cut of Humboldt Broncos GoFundMe: committee



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The committee tasked with recommending how the $ 15 million Humboldt Broncos GoFundMe should be divwied up says the families who lost a loved one in the bus crash should receive more than those who were in the crash and survived.

The five-person committee's report on how the money should be split was filed in Saskatoon Court of Queen's Bench Thursday. The April 6 crash killed 16 people and injured 13.

Den foreslåtte splittelsen ville se overlevende hver modtage $ 425,000, mens de familier eller forsørgere fra de crash fataloffer ville motta $ 475,000. Disse tallene inkluderer ikke en $ 50.000 interimsbetaling hver familie har modtaget tidligere i år.

'Depths of their despair is unfathomable'

In its 19-page report, the committee wrote that the majority of the 29 claimants felt the money should be divided 29 equal ways.

Men det udvalgte som det var ikke den rette løsning fordi "der er en stor forskjell i følelsesmessige forhold mellom de fleste familier, der mistede en elsket og de fleste af de familier, der ikke gjorde det."

"The first and most obvious difference is that 16 of the 29 passengers died on the bus, leaving their loved ones with profound grief, anguish and depression. The depths of their despair are unfathomable," the committee wrote.

3 claimants were 'aggressive'

The committee also singled out three of the 29 claimants for their "aggressive" behavior during consultations and for not being open to options other than an equal cut. Those outliers go unnamed in the report.

"Hver av de tre talte selvstændigt og til separate tider, hevdet at tale for alle de andre familier," udtalte kommittén.

"Det var åpenbart fra vores diskussioner med de påståede at ikke alle familiemedlemmer som døde i krasjstøtten, en lik distribution."

"We did not find their relatively aggressive approach to be helpful," the committee added.

Next steps

The report's recommendations are not the final word on the matter. Justice Neil Gabrielson will make the final decision after hearing arguments from lawyers for the families and the Humboldt Broncos Memorial Fund Inc., which has been the shepherding of the GoFundMe distribution through the court process.

Gabrielson has already decided that the division of money should not be exclusively linked to the expenses incurred by the families or survivors.

The next court date is set for Nov. 28th

Personer fra over 80 lande pledged a total $ 15 million on GoFundMe for the families after the April 6 collision between the Broncos team bus and a semi-trailer.

GoFundMe deducted more than $ 500,000 from the final count for payment processing. That, along with the interim payments, left about $ 13 million to be split up.

The five-person committee asked by the memorial fund corporation to recommend a split was made up of:

  • Dennis Ball, a retired Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench judge.
  • Mark Chipman, chairman of the company that owns the Winnipeg Jets hockey team.
  • Former Olympic hockey gold medalist Hayley Wickenheiser.
  • Dr. Peter Spafford of the University of Saskatchewan's College of Medicine.
  • Kevin Cameron, executive director of the Canadian Center for Threat Assessment and Trauma Response.

'We just wanted to help'

Sylvie Kellington, the woman who started the GoFundMe page alongside another Humboldt resident with the aim of helping families cover expenses, said she hopes the money can be distributed as soon as possible.

"It's been frustrating for the donors that this is taking so long, but I trust it's all being done properly," Kellington said Thursday. "I'm happy this did not happen on my shoulders."

She said she had no idea the fund would grow to record levels.

"We just wanted to help, and I think we did," she said. "The whole world responded." It was just wonderful. "

Insurance money

The GoFundMe money earmarked for families, if approved in court, will come in addition to various types of coverage from Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI).

SGI's no-fault program provides money for funeral expenses, grief counseling and payments to surviving spouses.

For example, Christina Haugan – the wife of head coach Darcy Haugan, who died in the crash – stands to receive payments equalizing 45 percent of her husband's salary, every year.

Team members injured in the crash are eligible for up to $ 6.9 million in coverage for medical and rehabilitation expenses.

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