Registrar’s Directive: Funeral services attendance

Registrar’s Directive: Funeral services
– Maximum of 15% to max of 50 attendees indoors 
–  2 metres distancing to max of 50 attendees outdoors

Effective Friday, June 11, 2021 

Funeral services and visitations have new restrictions starting Friday:

  • Indoors – Maximum of 15 per cent capacity of a particular room to a maximum of 50 attendees in the entire facility
  • Outdoors – Two metres physical distancing to a maximum of 50 attendees 

The restrictions are part of the Government of Ontario’s Step One announcement, and have additional restrictions developed in consultation with  the BAO’s:

  • Funeral and Transfer Service Advisory Committee
  • Cemetery, Crematorium and Municipal Advisory Committee  
  • And supported by the Ontario Funeral Service Association and the Ontario Association of Cemetery and Funeral Professionals  

Max 50 and other restrictions

The new maximum at any indoor or outdoor funeral service, including visitations, is 50 attendees. Funeral and cemetery staff do not count in the maximum of 50 attendees but staffing ratios will apply.

Funeral and cemetery staff will coordinate to maintain a staff ratio of: 

  • One staff member for every 10 attendees to a maximum requirement of four staff members for 50 attendees 

This Registrar’s Directive also includes these restrictions: 

  • All visitations must be scheduled (There can be more than one visitation per deceased person, as before)
  • Minimum of 15 minutes between scheduled indoor visitations for cleaning
  • Guests must sign in  
  • No lining up or cycling of attendees
  • All BAO licensed operators are allowed to be stricter in their establishments if they wish (For example, cemeteries can always have fewer people in attendance if they wish)  
  • Masks or face coverings continue to be required at all funeral services and visitations
  • Two metres (six feet) of physical distancing, except for members of the same household who live together
  • Continue cleaning and disinfecting all rooms 

This province-wide Registrar’s Directive applies to all funeral services, regardless of the venue. The exception will be funeral services held in the Porcupine Health Unit jurisdiction, which will continue under the previous maximum of 10 attendees Registrar’s Directive, issued on April 16, 2021 until further notice.  

The intention going forward is to phase-in increases in attendance numbers and fewer requirements as part of the Government of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopen. The province will remain in Step One for 21 days to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators. As indicators improve, the government will announce whether the province will move to Step Two of its reopening plan.