24 OCT 2017

Helen Calls for Action on Funeral Costs

Maidstone and the Weald MP Helen Grant has called on local authorities to take action over the rising cost of funerals.

In a parliamentary debate, called by Mitcham and Morden MP Siobhain McDonagh, Helen highlighted the growing problem of rising funeral costs in Maidstone and the Weald and the South East region more broadly. Funerals in the region now cost £4,900 on average, which is 5% higher than the national average. A figure which has rocketed up by 13.5% in the last four years alone.

Speaking after the debate Mrs Grant said, 'Bereavement is, of course, one of the biggest challenges families face without the ever increasing financial burden of arranging a funeral. Following the important debate I have now written to Maidstone Borough Council to ask if there is anything they can do to reduce the burden of funeral costs on families in our town.

During the debate, Helen also repeated her call to the Government to help grieving families by introducing a children's funeral fund. Such a move would offer similar support across the UK to that already available in Wales, since child burial fees were scrapped there earlier this year.

Commenting on this Helen said, 'For families who experience the trauma of losing a child to enter financial hardship as a consequence is a travesty and an injustice. I would urge the Chancellor to introduce a child funeral fund in the upcoming budget to support vulnerable families and help correct this burning injustice.

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