News and Blogs

No Grey Suits

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Vermonter Jack Manning's touching, candid, and funny account of the death of his wife, Ann, and the friends who came together to perform her funeral is a must read. If there's a better illustration of the fact that the value in funerals comes from human contact, community, and love, we haven't seen it.

Click the picture to the left to download No Grey Suits as a .pdf.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 June 2013 11:44 )

Montana running amok. . .again

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For the backstory on Montana's war on affordable funerals, see:

Montana Funeral Directors Try to Shut Down Competition

Montana: The Divine Right of Undertakers II

The state's funeral industry and its regulatory handmaidens just won't quit. The latest? Proposed revisions to the Board of Funeral Service's regulations that would sneakily put low-cost, direct-to-consumer crematories out of business. How? By making it illegal for a crematory operator to do the most basic, necessary tasks on his own :

  • Crematory operators would be barred from removing pacemakers (which state law requires, and which could blow up if not removed before cremation) unless they did so in a fully-equipped embalming room in a full-service mortuary. This would be like offering a Jiffy Lube from changing a car's oil unless it did so in a full-service car dealership with diagnostic computers and emissions-control equipment.

    Since no full-service mortuary is going to let a crematory competitor use its embalming room, or would charge a fee, or since the embalming room would be physically distant, this effectively prohibits cremation businesses from operating independent of a competitor.

  • Crematory operators could not even wash, dress, or comb the hair of a deceased person outside the walls of a full-embalming suite at a full-service mortuary. 

  • Anyone selling any kind of funeral—full-service, basic, or cremation-only—could only discuss it with the customer within the physical building of a full service funeral home or branch, unless otherwise requested by the customer. No, it doesn't make much sense to us either, but it appears to be another way to make business impossible for honest, reasonably priced businesses like Central Montana Crematorium

Here's our letter to the state board, which we've also sent to the Governor's office. 

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 24 July 2013 14:59 )

Complying with the Funeral Rule (VIDEO)

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Bureau of Consumer Protection
Business Center
Federal Trade Commission

The Funeral Rule gives people making funeral arrangements some important rights. And it establishes some basic requirements for funeral homes. If you sell funeral goods and services, you’ll want to know how to comply.


Last Updated ( Thursday, 11 April 2013 14:04 )

Green Burial in New York--Open Meeting

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Green Burial in New York State

You are invited to attend our Annual Meeting of the Funeral Consumers Alliance of Long Island/New York City on Saturday, April 13, 2013, at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Shelter Rock,
48 Shelter Rock Road, Manhasset, New York. The meeting is free. Refreshments are served after the meeting.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 June 2013 11:44 ) Read more...

Cost-conscious funerals in the Arizona Republic

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The Arizona Republic did a great overview article on planning send-offs that fit your budget. They featured the top-notch funeral price survey done by the FCA of Central Arizona, too. 


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