Ottawa (Ontario) – The Funeral Service Association of Canada (FSAC) ran a member survey over the past weeks to gauge the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on funeral providers. 244 members from across Canada responded to the survey, which represents a 6% margin of error on a 95% confidence level.
“Funeral providers across Canada have been dramatically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in multiple ways.” began Brett Watson, President of FSAC. “The survey results are alarming, as they show that 34% of funeral providers in Canada have dealt with COVID-19 related deaths and that 32% have not been able to obtain sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE).”
Funeral professionals are part of a cross-section of industries that are at the frontlines of responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. When an individual passes away with COVID-19, the profession is called upon to handle the deceased. Without sufficient PPE, these professionals are at a heightened risk of contracting the virus.
“While funeral providers are stepping up in responding to COVID-19, they are also dealing with widespread financial losses. The survey found that 77% have had their revenue negatively impacted, with over 35% having lost more than 30% of their revenue. This represents a significant impact on the industry.” continued Watson.
Funeral providers have also had to adapt their practices due to the COVID-19 pandemic and tight restrictions on gatherings. The survey found that 63% are providing live steam video for funerals and ceremonies, while nearly 62% did not provide this service prior to the pandemic.
“Our profession is adapting as quickly as we can to the current situation and continuing to serve families who have lost a loved one. While we have been deeply impacted by the current economic situation, we will continue to serve alongside our frontline healthcare workers. With a sufficient amount of PPE, we can also ensure the health and safety of all of those helping.” concluded Watson.