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Long waits for funerals cause freezer shortage

TT/The Local · 26 Jul 2010, 12:09

Published: 26 Jul 2010 12:09 GMT+02:00

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"Before, people used to prioritise funerals," cemetery manager Kalle Hansson told newspaper Norrköpings Tidningar in southeastern Sweden. "Now, people unfortunately prioritise their calendars more. This is evident especially around major holidays and vacations."

On average, 23 days elapses before a funeral ceremony takes place for the dead in Sweden. For the 80 percent of Swedes who are cremated, it takes an average of another 64 days before they are buried, according to figures from newspaper Fonus Nyheter.

Last year, a government report proposed setting the maximum time between death and burial at one month instead of the current two months. However, Hansson does not believe this will help significantly.

Story continues below…

"They should have embraced this long ago," he said. "The government and Sweden's parliament, the Riksdag, must legislate it," he told Norrköpings Tidningar.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:56 July 26, 2010 by Gretchen
They stand in queues even after death....
14:03 July 26, 2010 by Puffin
@ Gretchen

What do you mean by queues?

I don't think that the situation is caused by queues - the article made it clear that it was to do with changes in personal attitudes and choices. It more that there is no culture in Sweden to have a rapid funeral these days - many families prefer to wait a few weeks to find a date that suits all the relatives and pick a time/caterer that they like rather than rush to have a fast funeral.
16:30 July 26, 2010 by GefleFrequentFlyer
LOL @ Gretchen!

"Take a number!"
18:05 July 26, 2010 by skatty
Luckily, time is expired for dead.
20:16 July 26, 2010 by "green Swede"
I don't know though puffin,maybe gretchen's right maybe ye are both right,at the end of the day ,if one pardons the pun it would seem that even in death swedes que albeit somewhat due to the changing attitudes of their loved ones.personally i feel a period of 30 to 60 days very unusual,back home it's usually 2 days and the grief experienced is consumate with that amount of time,60 days later and as i have experienced once , the emotional aspect is quite different,is this a good or bad thing,well i'm not entirely sure.
22:16 July 26, 2010 by farooqkifayat
what if after death people feel some thing this is terrible !
00:58 July 27, 2010 by kenny8076
%80 of swedes are cremated? wow...............and i dont understand how they are buried after they are cremated?
13:08 July 27, 2010 by warriorwithin
why should the dead be buried ?isn't it a waste of real estate. Burning them off is a better practice i think.
13:41 July 27, 2010 by LeoKinmann

Have some humor please!

When my grandmother died, my relatives allowed some professionals to arrange the funeral. This was in Asia. And it only took a couple of days before she returned to earth. In other cultures people prioritize marriage and funerals. As for Sweden, I hope it's not because people think having vacation on a beach is more important than honoring the memory of a loved one. That's would seem absurdly selfish and uncivilized.
15:07 July 27, 2010 by Raiha
@ Leo

I agree. Is there anything more important than honouring a loved one?

This would never work in NZ where Maori's believe that a body should never be left alone after death until burial. Imagine having the deceased person lying around, having a 23 day wake, waiting for the selfish family to show up. I CAN'T imagine it. When somebody dies in my culture that takes precedence over everything. Full stop. Is this the product of a soulless culture with no beliefs other than hedonism and consumerism? "Sorry Mum, can't make it to Dad's funeral until I've finished furnishing my home with Ikea?"
00:15 July 28, 2010 by soultraveler3
I also think it sounds completly selfish and horrible that family members would put off honoring someone who died because it would get in the way of the annual trip to thailand or an important meeting. There's no reason in the world to wait that long, I can't imagine allowing a loved one's body to lay around for months. It's a person dying, not trying to find time to plant some flowers or something.

Your world should and does, in every other country, come to a complete stop when someone close dies. Those days after death need to be a time for mourning and respecting a person you love. It's sickening to think that people would put off something like that because it doesn't fit their schedule.
01:06 July 28, 2010 by DAVID T
who cares? not the dead person - they are dead
02:09 July 28, 2010 by Da Goat
People are dying to get in but not too keen to get out again it seems!

then again they are dead as David says so there is no hurry they are not going anywhere.

maybe there should be a third option where if they are not taken care of within the week or so then big brother state just takes care of them for you !

from cradle to grave will then be literal!

hmmmm maybe that is the issue, Swedes are so used to big brother caring for them they are waiting around to see what happens.

other than that maybe there is a months worth of red tape to blunder through first!

and red tape is shitty stuff if you are greaving!
08:33 July 28, 2010 by LeoKinmann
it's not as easy as "they are dead so nobody cares". think about how you want to be treated yourself. if a doctor/coroner tells you that after you pass away, due to the freezer shortage they have to squeeze your body into the freezer with many others, in some "uncomfortable" position, with your face shoved up in Mattias Flink's ass, and yours facing the boner of an old man charged with pedophilia. you have to remain in intimate close contact with them for one month before you can finally rest in peace. do you find the thought comfortable? if that would happen to me i'll even wish that i never die!
23:58 July 28, 2010 by DAVID T

I won't care because i'm dead -
12:48 July 29, 2010 by LeoKinmann
funny, since when can a dead person visit this website?
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