Western Cape undertakers have decided to join the national three-day strike which started on Monday.
They are accusing the government of selecting only certain funeral parlours for state funerals.
Pastor Kenny McDillon, who is on the interim Undertakers Provincial Committee, says they had a meeting yesterday to decide whether to join.
He explains: “After the meeting we voted that we should also join the strike and have a total shutdown in solidarity with other provinces.
“There will be no funerals and no removals from homes, hospitals and mortuaries until further notice.
“We will be having peaceful pickets outside the offices of the Department of Home Affairs and some of the major hospitals that we are not happy with how they deal with our issues.
“The grievances are all the same. The only reason we are only joining the strike today is because we had to first consult our members.”
Funeral workers are striking over changes to a host of procedures and regulations, including some introduced due to Coronavirus, that they say make it hard for small, black-owned parlours to operate and give big players an advantage.
They want a Covid-19 relief fund to help the industry cope with the pandemic.
EMS spokesperson Deana Bessick said they have ‘mass fatality’ plans in place: “The department will be kept abreast of any change in circumstances to ensure that the departmental service delivery is not adversely affected by disruption activities.”