The pandemic has affected everybody in one way or another and the funeral industry is no exception. Funeral restrictions have been inline for over a year now in order to curb the spread of coronavirus and to adhere to social distancing and lockdown measures.
The current funeral restrictions in line with government advice, mean that the number of attendees at a funeral will be determined by the venue that it is held at and how many it can comfortably accommodate whilst complying with social distancing regulations. There will no longer be a maximum number of attendees allowed at a funeral.
Since the 21st June, the maximum number of guests allowed at a “commemorative event”, which is the term used to describe anything from a wake to scattering ashes or a stone setting ceremony, is no longer limited to a maximum number of 30 people. Instead, the number of guests allowed will be determined by how many people can safely accommodate with social distancing still being in place.
How are the funeral restrictions affecting the industry
Funeral Directors around the country have been busier as a result of the pandemic and fulfilled more funerals than usual. However, the funerals in question will have seen less guests attend. This could have made Funeral Directors feel limited in the services and quality of care that they can provide, meaning that people’s funeral plans may not have been fulfilled. For example, the use of limousines to transport family members has been temporarily avoided due to social distancing guidelines and attendees have to wear masks unless exempt, meaning that singing hymns or songs is advised against.
The funeral restrictions could also have major effects on how mourners have been able to grieve, causing lasting damage due to people not being able to pay their respects how they would have wanted. In some cases, mourners were not able to attend the funerals of loved ones or had to attend via video link, this could make it more difficult to accept the loss due to not being able to say goodbye in a way that could aid the grieving process.
Due to guidelines, guests that attend a funeral from different households or support bubbles must be socially distancing, meaning that it may be hard to support and console loved ones at a difficult time, making it a potentially distressing situation.
If you are unsure about how your funeral plan could be affected by the current restrictions or would like to learn more about the Funeral Directors Alliance and how they can support you in selling plans, contact us or call one of our expert advisors on 0800 411 8685