Emily Post’s etiquette guide to grieving says that the bereaved are rarely hungry. Pennsylvania funeral homes would beg to differ.
The AP reported today that Lancaster County has banned food at funerals. The ban, which had been declared unconstitutional in 2012, declares that snacks in funeral homes may pose health safety concerns. Basically, a sandwich isn’t a great idea if it’s been sitting next to a dead body for a few hours.
Director Chad Snyder of The Charles F. Snyder Funeral Home in Lancaster told the AP that he was “disappointed” by the ruling, stating that food is safe if proper precautions are taken to keep it fresh.
This isn’t the first time catering in funeral homes has been controversial. Last April, Masachussetts senator Thomas Kennedy fought a similar bill, arguing that relatives of the deceased need refreshments to keep them going during wakes.
“I feel for the mourners, the widows, and immediate family members that they can’t sit in another room and have a cup of tea and get some nourishment and then greet their friends and family and feel somewhat energized.”
Boston Magazine reports that New Jersey, Connecticut, and New York have similar bans. Pennsylvania’s ban should stir up quite a bit of controversy over mourning rights.
Is the ban ridiculous or necessary? Let us know what you think in the comments.