Cumberland Insurance Joins Members of Congress in support of National Guard Deployment
March 3, 2008
BRIDGETON, NEW JERSEY: The Cumberland Insurance Group was among 10 New Jersey companies who joined Senators Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, and Congressman Rush Holt recently in support of New Jersey’s largest overseas deployment by the National Guard since World War II. Nearly 2,600 soldiers, which represents almost half of the State’s Army National Guard force, will be deployed in June. The event was quite personal as a member of the Cumberland family is part of the deployment.
” It was truly an eye-opening day,” said Ken Clements, Cumberland Insurance Group Vice President of Information Technology. “One of my senior engineers, Jonathan Lafferty, is a member of the 50th Infantry Brigade Combat Team which will be heading to Iraq later this year. It will be difficult to replace his skills, but we fully support his decision to join the Guard.
The event was organized to give employers the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the issues employees and their families will face as they prepare for the deployment. This included observing and participating in some of the training the soldiers are going through and meeting with officers to discuss the time commitment that will be required of their employees before they depart.
“My day started at the Lawrenceville Armory where I learned about the processing and training the guardsman will be going through,” Clements said. “Later, I was flown to Fort Dix on a Black Hawk helicopter to tour the training facilities. I was able to put on the actual gear that the troops carry, and was amazed at how heavy it was, approximately 150 pounds.”
“I then got the chance to experience the training facility first-hand which included a full scale Iraqi village where I was able to take part in an exercise, actually carrying and firing a simulated weapon,” Clements continued. “At the end of the day, I flew back to Lawrenceville and departed for home with a different perspective on what our young men and women go through and what they will experience in Iraq.”
In support of Jonathan, The Cumberland Insurance Group is doing all they can to help, and in fact is going beyond the requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act. “While Jonathan is deployed, he will continue to receive all of his Company benefits,” said Human Resources Director Laurie Latorre. “We are supplementing his National Guard pay so that it remains at his current civilian level. We are maintaining his medical coverage for his family as well as contributions to his retirement plan. While he is gone, his job duties will be covered by other employees through cross-training. When he returns in approximately 12 months, we will provide reverse cross-training to catch him up on the technology changes that may have taken place while he was gone.”
“All of us at The Cumberland Insurance Group are proud of Jonathan,” said Robert P. Brady, Cumberland Insurance Group President. “Considering the difficulties he and his family will be facing while he is away, we believe it is our responsibility to step up to the plate and do all we can to support him, and that is what we are going to do. It is inspiring to see individuals who are willing to take on this enormous challenge.”
The Cumberland Insurance Group is rated A+ Superior by the A.M. Best Company, and currently serves over 134,000 policyholders in the states of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland. In 2006, the Company had Total Admitted Assets of $313,885,235 and a Policyholders’ Surplus of $140,421,618. For more information about The Cumberland Insurance Group, please visit www.cumberlandgroup.com.« Back to News