Gwent Local Resilience Forum (LRF) statement on numbers at funeral services
Today (23/5/20), partners of the Gwent Local Resilience Forum agreed to increase the number of mourners permitted to attend funerals, memorial services and gatherings at Gwent Crematorium and cemeteries within the five local authority areas of Gwent, to ten (10). This will come into effect on Tuesday 26 May.
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak and in line with government restrictions, it is still necessary to limit the number of people in any public space and ensure necessary social distancing.
However, all councils fully recognise and understand how difficult these restrictions can be for the family and friends of the deceased.
The level of demand and related risk at these sites has been under constant review and restrictions have been eased as soon as it has been deemed safe and appropriate to do so for both the public and staff.
The decision follows a review of risk assessments and took into account a number of factors, including the ability to safely maintain and enforce the two-metre social distancing requirements, and the impact an increase in attendance would have on the continued health, safety and welfare of all those attending, managing and officiating the funeral.
The new number supports the continued protection of the public, the ongoing effort to slow the spread of the virus, and ensures bereavement services can continue to manage a safe and dignified funeral.
The original decision to limit the numbers of mourners was one that was not taken lightly. Respect for the deceased and compassion for the bereaved is an important part of our decision making, but protecting the health and wellbeing of the public, funeral and cemetery staff has to be the foremost concern during this ongoing public health emergency.
Partners of the Gwent Resilience Forum will keep this matter under continual review while the Covid-19 pandemic continues to impact the Gwent area.