United Kingdom

New Muslim sections opened at cemeteries in Birmingham following delays in releasing bodies

New Muslim sections have been opened at cemeteries in Birmingham following delays in bodies of deceased people being released to their families. The delays have led to difficulties in Muslims being able to observe cultural and religious traditions.

Quinton Cemetery Muslim section has now opened in order to take short-term burials. Muslim communities say they are distressed at being unable to perform burial rites according to their religion.

Sajeela Naseer, Director of regulation and enforcement said: “This council notes with concern continued delays in the release of the deceased for burial and in the registration processes for births and deaths. It notes this can cause extreme distress and in some instances, financial hardship.

“This council further notes that these issues are the result of significant impact of the changes to death registration arrangements resulting from the expiry of the Coronavirus Act on 25 March 2022, together with post-pandemic changes in GP practices impacting the issuing of Medical Certificates for the Cause of Death, which resulted in the overnight doubling of cases referred to the Coroner.

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