Gay people face discrimination when arranging funerals, survey reveals
Reposted from The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/16/gay-lesbian-funeral-arranging-discrimination-survey
Co-op Funeralcare director says 'barriers remain even in death' as survey shows 25% of LGBT people expect to face prejudice
Gay, lesbian and bisexual people fear discrimination when arranging a funeral, according to a survey where one in ten respondents say they have experienced prejudice first hand following the death of a loved one or close friend.
A joint report by campaign group Stonewall and the UK's largest funeral director – Co-operative FuneralCare – says it has uncovered poor treatment towards grieving members of the gay community, with family members and religious leaders most likely to discriminate against them in this situation.
One in four of the 522 adults surveyed by YouGov said they expect to face barriers when planning a funeral, with almost a quarter worried about being treated poorly by a funeral director when arranging a funeral. Two out of five feared the reaction they would get from religious leaders or officials while one in five worried about discrimination from family members.
Stonewall and Co-operative FuneralCare have published a guide for lesbian, gay and bisexual people on planning for later life, which includes advice on the law, making financial provision such as a will or purchasing a funeral plan, and planning and arranging a funeral.
George Tinning, managing director of Co-operative Funeralcare, said: "Despite changes to the law to provide equal rights for people regardless of their sexual orientation and a perceived greater acceptance in society, it is clear from our research that barriers remain even in death. The death of a loved one can be deeply distressing but at a time when people should expect sympathy and understanding, many gay people have faced poor treatment which is simply unacceptable."