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NAIFA Senior Vice President for Government Relations Diane Boyle appeared with other industry thought leaders on the National & Federal Insurance Perspective Panel at the Life Insurance Council of New York (LICONY) Annual Meeting and Planning Conference in Albany. She discussed with other panelists the top issues facing the insurance and financial services industry, the promotion of diversity and inclusion in the insurance sector, issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and NAIFA’s work with the American Council of Life Insurance (ACLI) to remove unnecessary barriers to recruiting new insurance professionals.

Joining Boyle on the panel were Andrew Mais, Connecticut Insurance Commissioner and Vice President of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC); Pamela Hunter, Member of the New York Assembly and Chair of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) Health and Long Term Care Issues Committee; and Susan K. Neely, President and CEO of the ACLI.

NAIFA’s advocacy work is focused on preserving access to financial advice and affordable products for Main Street Americans. It also encourages public policy that ensures independent producers’ option to remain independent and opposes policy changes that would make it more difficult or expensive for consumers to obtain products and services. NAIFA supports efforts to improve recruiting, retention, and diversity in the life insurance producer community, as well as those that promote retirement planning and increased access to long-term care insurance plans through coordination with emerging public/private programs, tax incentives, and removing regulatory hurdles for product innovations.

Boyle and Neely discussed NAIFA and ACLI’s initiative to reduce barriers for qualified people interested in becoming producers while maintaining high professional and ethical standards. Among proposals that have gained some traction are an effort to encourage states to offer licensing exams in Spanish and other languages, promoting greater transparency of demographic information pertaining to licensing exam passing rates, and supporting increased uniformity and transparency on the waiver process for license applicants with criminal records involving minor or unrelated charges.

NAIFA is proud to partner with ACLI on advocacy work that promotes consumer protections and supports the ability of insurance and financial advisors to serve Main Street clients. NAIFA also works with the NAIC and NCOIL to create and promote model legislation and regulations. NAIFA’s input helps insure that these models benefit consumers, encourage strong relationships between financial professionals and their clients, and ensure Main Street Americans have access to needed products, services, and advice. NAIFA’s New York chapter (NAIFA-NY) collaborates with LICONY on issues that are important to agents and advisors, the industry, and the consumers they serve.