Cameras In The Chapel: The Future Of Funerals Under New Social Distancing Rules
Funerals will be completely transformed under new social distancing measures that limit services to just 10 people.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the new changes on Wednesday, claiming the restrictions were consistent with the country's ban on mass gatherings.
Morrison clarified on Thursday morning states and territories could use their discretion to allow more people to attend in cases of "hardship".
"The 4-square-metre rule per person must be strictly observed within the premises and personal contact during the patron's visit should be minimised wherever possible," he said in a statement.
"Also it was noted in hardship cases, states and territories can provide exemptions in relation to attendance at funerals, but only at the margin."
The Australian Funeral Directors Association said services will still be going ahead during the pandemic, but they'll just look slightly different.
To allow loved ones to virtually attend, the organisation said they're ensuring all funerals will be recorded, webcast and live streamed.
“Our members are absolutely committed to providing a respectful and inclusive farewell despite the strict limitations on physical attendance," AFDA president Andrew Pinder said.
“In these extremely difficult times, numbers have to be minimised at all services, however we are still able to provide suitable arrangements for clients across the country and we are working with families to arrange respectful services that allow immediate family to gather," he said.
The ADFA is also urging the government to give the industry further clarity by defining its members as essential businesses.
“This classification will ensure ongoing confidence the AFDA members can continue to care for the deceased and their families through this difficult period," Pinder said.
The association also said it would maintain high levels or personal hygiene at services, including cleaning and disinfecting items and minimising contact with others.
"Australian families who are seeking funeral services should feel confident that their loved ones will be farewelled safely and respectfully," Pinder said.
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