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Message of reassurance from Cllr Sharon Thompson

Published: Sunday, 22nd March 2020

Cllr Sharon Thompson, cabinet member for homes and neighbourhoods, has reassured communities in the city following speculation about funerals during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cllr Thompson has written to Birmingham City Councillors and Members of Parliament:

Dear colleagues

I’ve been concerned to hear of speculation circulating in Birmingham and the wider region alleging that a forced method of funeral will be required for religious communities who oppose certain methods.  At this time there are no plans for forcing a particular type of funeral on any sector of the community.

We will be speaking to the Minster responsible and working with Government communications to ensure reassuring messaging is issued to tackle some of the disinformation that is circulating and causing unnecessary alarm.

It is really important that we reassure all our communities at this difficult time so I would ask for your help in passing on this information.

New legislation has been proposed for debate in the House of Commons that would allow local authorities to take certain actions; the city council’s bereavement services are in the process of addressing the actions that may be taken under new national legislation.   

The city council, along with all agencies involved in trying to address the Pandemic Covid 19 outbreak, is engaged in work to try and work out many scenarios and how services might mitigate the impact.

We must all continue to work together and support our citizens, particularly our most vulnerable.

Cllr Sharon Thompson