Comhaltas Insurance: Music Schools and Events
The subject of insurance came up at the Craobh Loch Garman committee meeting last night. Following a query on the matter we had sought clarification from Comhaltas administration on the following:
In the case of music/dance schools teaching traditional music, singing and dancing, in which the schools are independent entities and in which organisers, teachers and students are paid up members of Comhaltas, are those organisers, teachers and students covered by the insurance that comes with membership of Comhaltas?
The advice from Comhaltas is that regarding teachers who are employed and remunerated by a Comhaltas branch, and who are currently Garda Vetted, they are covered by Comhaltas insurance. If they are not employed and remunerated by the branch they are not covered.
In the instance in which Comhaltas uses the services of teachers, who are not employees of Comhaltas, they are considered to be sub-contractors and they must have public liability cover in each of their own names. Their insurers must provide indemnity to Comhaltas. Comhaltas has an obligation to ensure all sub-contractors are Garda vetted.
Music/dance schools which are not run by Comhaltas, notwithstanding that students, teachers and organisers may be members of Comhaltas, are seen as being entities in their own right. As such they are responsible for their own affairs.
As Craobh Loch Garman is not involved in teaching traditional arts of any kind at present we have not had to deal with the above scenario. However, as one of the aims of Comhaltas is to promote and preserve traditional music, dance and language through teaching, and other means, it is something that we may face sooner or later.
Regarding events which a Comhaltas branch may organise, once the correct protocol is followed, such events have public liability cover through Comhaltas. It should be noted that an independent music/dance school organising an event, notwithstanding that all its students, teachers and organisers are paid up Comhaltas members, cannot rely on Comhaltas insurance cover. It may, however, be possible to have cover for such events where they are organised through, or officially sanctioned by, the branch executive and follow the necessary protocols.
Postscript: Comhaltas Administration has since us a note to say that while they acknowledge the information they sent us is that which the organisation's insurers provided, there may be developments in the near future.