RESTRICTIONS imposed on wakes and funerals to combat the spread of coronavirus are having a “severe impact” on families who have recently lost loved ones, according to a local undertaker.
Over the past few weeks, the normal traditions associated with death in Ireland have been changed beyond all recognition.
Few are experiencing the effect of this more acutely than local undertakers who are at the forefront of helping families at this difficult time.
Pat McAtee of McAtee Funeral Directors in Fintona is a member of the Irish Association of Funeral Directors (IAFD).
He says the current situation, while necessary, has already removed most of the rituals which have proved to be so comforting to the bereaved.
“It is going to be very hard for families who suffer a loss at this time, whether that be through Covid-19 or if the person has died from natural causes,” he said.
“Some may not get the opportunity to see their loved one, and there won’t be a wake or the opportunity for extended family members, friends and neighbours to offer their condolences in the usual way.
“There will be a memorial service at a later date, but the new arrangements are changing things completely.”
The IAFD has issued clear instructions to funeral directors over the guidelines around wakes and funerals which must be adhered to.
Death notices now come with the stipulation that the wake and funeral are ‘strictly private’ due to the Covid-19 restrictions.
However, Mr McAtee says that funeral directors remain totally committed to continuing to carry out their work in a dignified and professional manner.
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