What to do when someone dies

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This section sets out the steps to take when someone is dying or has died and is to be buried in the Denman Island Natural Burial Cemetery.  Speak to the cemetery manager if you have any questions.

1. Telephone us at 250-335-1786 to let us know that a burial will be needed either in the next few days or in the foreseeable future. The Cemetery Manager will confirm that the person meets the elegibitlity requirements and check whether a Right of Interment has already been purchased for this person.

2. Meet with the Cemetery Manager to review the principles of natural burial and pay the grave opening (and possibly closing) fees and plaque fee. If a Right of Interment has not already been purchased then do this now.

3. Once the death has occurred, book a date with the Cemetery Manager, providing the approximate time for the burial. Complete the top part of the form entitled Authorization to Allow Interment and give it to the Cemetery Manager. The Manager will then complete the bottom part of the document, the Permission to Inter, and provide you with a copy. The Manager will also arrange for the opening and closing of the grave.

4. Obtain a Disposition Permit from the Vital Statistics Agency. A cemetery cannot bury a body without a Disposition Permit. If the services of a funeral parlour are being used, the funeral will typically complete the paperwork involved in getting this permit.

5. Ensure that the body of the deceased is  kept cool and not treated with chemical preservatives.

6. Choose clothing for the deceased that is free of any non-biodegradable material.

7. Choose a container that is made of biodegradable material.

8. Obtain a Private Transport Permit from Consumer Protection BC for the person who will be driving the vehicle with the body.  If the services of a funeral parlour are being used, the funeral will typically complete the paperwork involved in getting this permit. Also arrange for transport of the body from the gate to the graveside.

See also this information from the government of British Columbia.