After expressed concerns from members of the Muslim community in Ireland, Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan approved a change to the burial regulations established in 1888, which will allow human remains to be buried without a coffin.
On June 1 the reform will override the original rule that no burials are allowed, “unless the body be enclosed in a coffin of wood or some other sufficiently strong material.”
The Irish Times reported that a spokesman for the Department of the Environment explained that, “The change to the rule follows concerns recently expressed by members of the Muslim community regarding their traditional burial rituals,” although the option to go without a coffin will not be exclusive to people of muslim faith.
It is reported that the Environmental Protection Agency, HSE and the City and County Managers Association all approved of the change.
As we warned in 2010: