COVID-19

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

At Nelson Bros Funeral Services, our first priority is the health and safety of the families we serve, our staff, and members of the general community. We are all paying close attention to COVID-19 and its increasing spread across Melbourne. Please be aware we are currently following the direction of the the Federal and State Governments.

 

(Last updated Wednesday 5th August 2020)

At Nelson Bros Funeral Services, our first priority is the health and safety of the families we serve, our staff, and members of the general community. We are all paying close attention to COVID-19 and its increasing spread across Melbourne. Please be aware we are currently following the direction of the the Federal and State Governments.

This is a difficult and constantly changing time for all, but we are particularly sensitive to those who recently lost someone close to them and are grieving or mourning following the death. We are very sorry for your loss.

 

Government Restrictions

Please note that under Stage 4 'Stay at Home' restrictions, we are a permitted industry as per the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services and have a COVID Safe Plan in place.

Following government advice to reduce the risk of the virus’s spread, we have implemented a number of precautions:

Appointments
  • Our funeral homes are open by appointment only. Please call (03) 8398 4333 to make an appointment.
Face Masks
  • In the State of Victoria, all people outside of their homes are required to wear face coverings. This includes all of our Nelson Bros staff and anyone attending a funeral, viewing or any meeting or appointment with Nelson Bros. 
Funeral Numbers
  • A maximum of 10 mourners may attend a funeral. This does not include Nelson Bros staff, the officiant (e.g. minister or celebrant) or others required to carry out the funeral, such as a videographer.
  • There must be a density of no more than one person per four square metres of floor space.
  • We require all funerals to be by invitation only and not advertised, so that you can control the numbers of those attending, and can communicate to them.
  • It is a government requirement for us to record the name and contact details of every person who attends a service for tracing purposes. 
  • For the health & safety of all, we ask that you communicate with those planning to attend the funeral who are unwell or at high risk to COVID-19 that they should not attend. This includes those who have had close contact with a confirmed case or have recently travelled internationally. 
  • These government regulations are enforceable by fines to individuals as well as to corporations. We are unable to allow a funeral service to commence where there are more attending than the government restrictions allow. Please support us on in communicating this strongly with those who may attend the service.
Funeral Arrangements
  • During this period of social distancing, we are providing a range of ways families can meet with us to arrange a funeral.
  • At our funeral home, we are able to meet with a maximum of one family member in person for the funeral arrangement.
  • Via Video Conference, we can have any number of family members join us separately via video. We use Microsoft Teams for our Video Arrangement Meetings. 
  • We can also arrange the funeral with you over the phone.
  • To assist you with the funeral arrangements, you can use our Online Planning Tool to provide us with the personal data in advance. This can be done here.
  • This website provides a large range of information to help plan your funeral. We encourage you to spend time looking through it to understand our range of products and services, and for new ideas.
Refreshments
  • Refreshments at our funeral homes are unavailable at this time.
Service Fees
  • We have reduced our Service Fees during the period of the government restrictions to reflect the range of services we are able to offer at this time. 

The Australian Federal Government has outlined a 3 step framework (read here) for restrictions to be lifted, with specific reference to funerals. The Victorian State Government will determine which elements of these steps it will adopt and when.

Meaningful Funerals during COVID-19 Restrictions

Ceremony

  • Funeral ceremonies exist across all cultures because of their power to help families with their grief. A ceremony, whether small, intimate and private, or following your religious or cultural traditions, is an important step following the death of someone close to you. Having a service that is meaningful will provide a respectful goodbye can still take place during the current restrictions, with eulogies, music, and other forms of remembrance.
  • The funeral ceremony:

    • Helps us acknowledge that someone we love has died.
    • Fosters our memories of the person who died and encourages us to share those memories with others.
    • Offers a time and place for us to talk about the life and death of the person who died.
    • Provides a social support system for us and other friends and family members.
    • Allows us to search for the meaning of life and death.
    • Offers continuity and hope for the living.

Viewing

  • Unfortunately, the pandemic is wreaking havoc with how families deal with a family member dying. Many can’t visit those who are dying (of COVID-10 or any cause) in the hospital, and distant family members can’t travel to be near. It’s much harder to acknowledge the reality of the death when you never see the person who died. Now, more than ever, Nelson Bros provides all families with the opportunity to spend your own private time at one of our funeral homes with the one you have lost.

Tribute Wall

  • All Nelson Bros funerals have their own personal online tribute page. They are particularly helpful for posting tribute videos, photos, obituary, poems and other elements that would be typically be done at the funeral. It also enables those who cannot attend to share their support at this time.
Webcasting
  • Funerals held at Nelson Bros chapels will all be filmed and available to watch online anywhere in the world by the next business day at no additional fee. Live streaming is also available, as is filming of any funeral at any location. A link to the webcast is posted on the Tribute Wall.
  • For more information about webcasting, click here
Memory Table at Home
  • It’s important for families to acknowledge your loss as opposed to moving on to avoid painful emotions. Think of this display as a substitute for a memory table at a funeral. The process of gathering items and photos can be a positive way to bring a much-needed sense of healing.
Flowers
  • Many industries are being challenged in the current environment, none more so than florists. We hope you can support them. Our partners at Flowers Vasette have introduced extra products and services, all with direct home delivery. These include their full floral range, but also indoor plants, their own beautiful range of scented candles, and care packages including fresh fruit and other produce. Think about extended family and friends impacted by the loss who could benefit from this. Click here to purchase directly. 
Our Partners
  • Nelson Bros is working closely with our valued staff and others involved at our funerals, including celebrants, churches and cemeteries. We are focused on ensuring their safety as well as yours.

 

Memorial Services following the Shutdown

We acknowledge that these restrictions mean that you may not be able to have the type of funeral you might otherwise have. In recognition of this and of the importance of funerals to families, we are committed to providing at no extra charge an additional Memorial Service to all families who experience a death during these restrictions. This Memorial Service would be held at any one of our funeral homes once all restrictions are lifted. Thank you for supporting us at this challenging time.

 

Yours Sincerely

Adrian Nelson,
Chief Executive Officer,
Nelson Bros Funeral Services

 

Please note this was accurate at the time of writing. This is a time of constant change and many updates to government regulations. We will do our best to constantly keep you up to date.    

Additional Resources

https://www.australia.gov.au/

https://www.vic.gov.au/coronavirus 

https://www.dhhs.vic.gov.au/Coronavirus

https://www.worksafe.vic.gov.au/safety-alerts/exposure-Coronavirus-workplaces

https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-Coronavirus-2019-ncov

https://www.who.int/health-topics/Coronavirus

 

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Coronavirus - Current Restrictions and our Commitment to Safety. Read More.

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