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Re: community gardens- dealing with liability issues

  • Subject: [cg] Re: community gardens- dealing with liability issues
  • From: "Cynthia Price" skyprice@gmail.com
  • Date: Wed, 12 Jul 2006 21:05:48 -0400

The City of Grand Rapids asked the Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems
Council to take over managing a fairly large community garden that
there were water supply problems with, now resolved. The only
disclaimer was we had to pay for our own insurance.

The Food Systems Council is sponsored by West Michigan Environmental
Action Council, and when our staff person checked on it he found out
that it was just a $150 rider on WMEAC's insurance.  We had a very
small unrestricted grant we could take that out of. Now, I imagine as
a large non-profit WMEAC has pretty good insurance already, but maybe
it would be a similar situation with the museum. If they wanted you to
come up with whatever the extra charge is, a tiny fund-raiser would do
it. How small the charge is might depend on what city you're in, or
other circumstances, but it would be worth checking out.

Cynthia Price
Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council

On 7/12/06, William Hohauser <williamhohauser@earthlink.net> wrote:
This is a big, big issue. First of all we live in a country where
lawsuits are dispensed like disposable cups.

You could find an insurance policy by yourselves or thru an
organization that helps non-profits with their insurance or you could
see if the museum's insurance already covers the garden. They must
have a policy that includes coverage of their grounds. Unfortunately
the museum may have changed it's mind about the arrangement  with the
advocacy group and is using the insurance as a way to say get lost.

There are precedents with lawsuits against community gardens. They
have happened, a few legitimate lawsuits and others not. A few
resulted in monetary awards to the plantiff. In New York City most of
the gardens are now covered by the city's Parks Dept. or have an
arrangement thru a non-profit organization. Without coverage,
individual garden members could become the focus of a lawsuit. That
would be a big problem.

You may have to reassess whether this museum is a good partner after
all. If they refuse to cover the garden (of course it may not be
them, insurance companies are always looking to reduce their
responsibilities) and the advocacy group can't raise the money, this
project may have to be moved elsewhere.


William Hohauser
6th Street and Avenue B Garden
New York City

On Jul 12, 2006, at 7:16 PM, Molly MacDonald wrote:

> Hi everyone
>
> I am part of an organization that links groups that
> want to start a community garden with community
> partners who have land to offer. We're a brand new
> group and are still learning the ins and outs of
> community gardening. We've recently linked an
> anti-poverty advocacy group with a local museum that
> has land in their courtyard. The land has been tilled
> and plots prepared, but the museum has now said that
> planting cannot take place unless the gardeners come
> up with insurance. Since all of them are on welfare or
> disability this is hardly a fair request. I was just
> wondering what other people's experience has been with
> this sort of issue. Is there a precedent for lawsuits
> in community gardens? Does anyone have any suggestions
> as to how to quell the museum's fears, navigate this
> situation etc? Thank you.
> Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
> http://mail.yahoo.com
>
>
> ______________________________________________________
> The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one
> of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the
> ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://
> www.communitygarden.org
>
>
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>
> To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:  https://
> secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden


______________________________________________________
The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's
services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find
out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org


To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com

To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:
https://secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden

______________________________________________________
The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's services to community gardeners. To learn more about the ACGA and to find out how to join, please go to http://www.communitygarden.org


To post an e-mail to the list:  community_garden@mallorn.com

To subscribe, unsubscribe or change your subscription:  https://secure.mallorn.com/mailman/listinfo/community_garden





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