For the first time since the Board of Deputies began collating reports of Jewish Covid-19 funerals on 23rd March 2020, there were no such funerals reported to the Board of Deputies in the week leading up to Pesach.
By contrast, the seven largest burial societies reported 97 Jewish Covid-19 funerals in the week before Pesach last year. The most Jewish Covid-19 funerals reported for a seven-day period was 127, in the seven days ending 13th April 2020, which was the third day of Chol Hamoed Pesach last year.
The ‘zero’ figure should be taken with caution, as smaller burial societies do not report on a weekly basis to the Board of Deputies. However, Marie van der Zyl, President of the Board of Deputies, welcomed the news.
Marie said: “Covid-19 has taken at least 900 members of the Jewish community. Seder this year will have been difficult for many, not just because they could not meet with wider friends and family, but also as they reflected on loved ones they have lost in the last year. Our hearts go out to all who have suffered bereavement.
“However, as we know with this virus, complacency can still be deadly. While this week’s news is welcome, we urge the community to continue to scrupulously follow the Government’s guidance on social distancing so we can prevent further tragedy.”