SiMBA is delighted at the news that the Scottish government and the council body Cosla agreed to remove all local authority charges to inter anyone under the age of 18, and knows that this will have a far reaching, positive impact for families who will face the sadness of losing their baby or child.
In November 2016 Carolyn Harris MP for Swansea East, who had to take out a loan to pay for her son's funeral in 1989, was successful in her unwavering campaign to have burial and cremation fees for children are scrapped by the Welsh Government.
The campaign was then taken to Westminster and in April 2018 Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed that such fees would be met by a new Children's Funeral Fund to help parents struggling to pay for funerals for children aged under 18.
SiMBA volunteer Michael McGuire met with Kate Forbes MSP and had been working with her and her team to bring about a petition to the Scottish Government to bring Scotland in line with England and Wales. Yesterday Michael received confirmation that the Scottish Government & Cosla had reached an agreement and that across Scotland fees for cremation & internment will be waived for anyone under the age of 18.
Michael McGuire has supported SiMBA for many years here is his reaction to the news
" I woke up and had to pinch myself I am absolutely delighted with today's news from Holyrood. Just last night I questioned myself whether I was right, but I woke up today determined not to give in. Then the call came from Kate Forbes office to say we had won. Parents had won and will no longer pay burial or cremation fees for their children.
I cried a little as I have said the last 9 years I deeply regret being back at work 3 days after laying Kyle to sleep. I wasn't there for my wife and never had the chance to grieve. I had bills to pay and funeral costs dictated otherwise.
I hope this will open many doors for families like ours x"
Bereaved parents and grandparents can be a source of real power and become a powerful movement for change. Together we are stronger, together we can make a difference.
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