Re: Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services COVID-19 Protocols
Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services (CCFS) is committed to serving our bereaved families and working to ensure their health and safety. In order to do this, we are equally committed and focused on the health and safety of our employees. As a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic, CCFS has been adjusting our operations and levels of public interaction in an effort to do our part to slow the transmission of this virus. Please know that we are taking extra precautions to keep our facilities and offices sanitized.
Our cemetery gates and mausolea are open for visitation each day. For our current gate hours please visit catholic-cemeteries.ca/gate-closing-times. It is mandatory that all visitors/attendees wear a mask when indoors. It is mandatory that all visitors/attendees wear a mask when outdoors and physical distancing can not be maintained. At all other times, it is recommended that a mask be worn. The use of a mask is not mandatory for individuals who suffer from an illness/disabilities that make it difficult to put on/take off/breathe through, or children under the age of 2 years. All attendees must wash/sanitize their hands before or upon entry to any CCFS building for any purpose. CCFS has implemented a Safe Distance Protocol. We ask that there be no direct physical contact such as handshakes and hugs, and our employees will observe a 6-foot distance with visitors wherever possible. Physical distancing requirements and attendee number restrictions are in place at all times in accordance with guidance from the Provincial Government, Public Health Authorities and the Bereavement Authority of Ontario.
Our Funeral Homes and Cemetery offices remain open by telephone/email or by scheduled appointment to serve you and your family. Virtual appointments are also available for your convenience. Please review the following information for additional detail:
All individuals will be screened and/or be required to complete self-screening prior to entering a CCFS cemetery, funeral home, office or building. The screening questions are:
– Do you have any of these symptoms? Fever / Chills / New Cough / Shortness of Breath / Sore Throat / Long Lasting or Unusual Headache / Muscle Aches / Runny or Congested Nose not related to Seasonal Allergies / Lost Sense of Taste or Smell / Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis) / Digestive Issues / Extreme Fatigue / Falling Down Often
– Have you/any member of your immediate family with whom you reside travelled outside of Ontario in the last 14 days?
– Have you or any member of your immediate family been in contact with someone who has or is suspected to have COVID-19?
– Are you or any member of your immediate family in self-isolation or quarantine?
– Has Public Health been involved?
If an individual answers YES to any of the above questions, they may not attend a CCFS cemetery, funeral home, office or building for any purpose. If the purpose of your visit is to make arrangements, please contact us and we will make these arrangements by alternative means (phone/email, etc.)
For Funeral, Cremation, Interment Services and Office Appointments related to a COVID-19 Death
– If the cause of death of your loved one is COVID-19 or is suspected to be COVID-19 please contact us to discuss our specific protocols for a COVID-19 decedent, so that we may serve you with care and compassion.
For Funeral, Cremation, Interment Services and Office Appointments NOT related to a COVID-19 Death
– Visitation, Funeral Services and Family Receptions/Meals held at our Funeral Homes or Reception Centres are limited to a maximum of 30 attendees. Upon request, CCFS can livestream the funeral service on the web for family and friends who are not able to be in attendance. Please contact us for more information.
– Outdoor Committal/Burial/Entombment Services are limited to a maximum of 100 attendees, providing that the requirements specified by the Bereavement Authority of Ontario can be practiced by the attending funeral home. If there is no attending funeral home, the maximum number of attendees is 25.
– Indoor Committal/Burial/Entombment Services at our CCFS Cemeteries are limited to a maximum of a maximum of 25 attendees.
– Immediate family viewing the closing of a grave (lower and fill) must maintain a distance of 50 feet from operating equipment for the health and safety of all.
– A Cremation Witnessing may occur with a maximum of 2 attendees.
– The cemetery office and funeral home staff remain available by appointment only.
– The cemetery office doors will be locked at all times and opened only for those with scheduled appointments.
– The funeral home doors will be locked and opened only for those with appointments or during periods in which attendees are present for visitation, funeral services and receptions.
– Office appointments at the cemetery or funeral home will be limited to a maximum of 2 attendees.
– In the interest of everyone’s health, handshaking, hugging and other direct contact should be avoided. Unwell individuals should not attend a CCFS cemetery, funeral home, office, mausoleum or building for any purpose.
Thank you for adhering to these protocols and for your understanding and patience during these unprecedented times. We pray for those infected with COVID-19, those caring for the sick and for one another.