Derry and Strabane: Child burial costs waived by council

Baby's feet Image copyright Liudmila_Fadzeyeva
Image caption The motion was put forward by SDLP councillor John Boyle

Derry City and Strabane District Council has voted to waive burial costs for children.

The motion was supported unanimously in the council chamber in Londonderry's Guildhall on Thursday.

It will remain in place until the matter can be looked at and acted on regionally across Northern Ireland by a restored Assembly.

It comes after similar motions were first passed by Belfast City Council and Armagh City Council.

Mid and East Antrim, Newry, Mourne and Down, as well as Banbridge and Craigavon Council have also implemented the changes in recent weeks.

In England, the cost of a child's funeral is waived under a scheme introduced in March.

'A small mercy'

Proposing his motion SDLP councillor John Boyle said: "Nothing can really help bereaved parents".

"Parents do not expect to bury their children and no-one plans for burying or cremating a child because it is unthinkable," Mr Boyle added.

"Sadly, though, from time to time it does happen. I think that it is a shame that this has not been done before now and it would be a small mercy that we could give to grieving parents.

"The financial cost of this is not something that we couldn't bear."

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