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Governor Issues Stay-At-Home Order

Funeral Home Staff Excluded

This morning, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued a new Executive Order, commonly referred to as a "Stay-at-Home" Order, effective at midnight tonight and in effect for the next three weeks.

The Order (E.O. 2020-21) exempts those who were identified in a March 19 Guidance (and emailed to MFDA members on March 20) from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency as "Critical Infrastructure Workers".  Under the category of Health Care/Public Health lists:

  • "Workers performing mortuary services, including funeral homes, crematoriums, and cemetery workers
  • Workers who coordinate other organizations to ensure the proper recovery, handling, identification, transportation, tracking, storage, and disposal of human remains and personal effects; certify cause of death; and facilitate access to mental/behavioral health services to family members, responders, and survivors of an incident."

Therefore, Funeral Directors and non-licensed funeral home staff are exempt as critical infrastructure workers, as well as support services such as removal or livery services, trade embalmers, chemical suppliers, etc.

Furthermore, the Order exempts certain activities that allow individuals to leave their homes as essential. While these exempt activities do not specifically include making in-person arrangements with a funeral director, MFDA believes that several of the listed exemptions would include participation in an arrangements conference, particularly to obtain death certificate information. MFDA also encourages the use of services such as Zoom, GoToMeeting, etc. to conduct arrangements conferences. This list of essential activities, however, does not include attending a funeral or memorial services.  MFDA has reached out to the Governor's office to specifically clarify this question.  Further information will be forthcoming.

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