Prohibition on food at funeral homes could end under measure

WOODLAND PARK, N.J. (AP) — Lawmakers in New Jersey could soon end a prohibition on food and beverages in funeral homes.

The Record reports Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin is sponsoring a bill that would update a variety of funeral practices in the state. Under the measure, the food prohibition would be taken off the books so refreshments could be served or catered for friends and family of the deceased.

The state is among a handful that forbids refreshments at funeral homes. Lenore Guido, bereavement coordinator at Holy Name Hospice, says coming together to break bread is a custom that's even more important in times of grief.

But Louis Stellato Jr., president of several northern New Jersey funeral homes, worries that accommodating food would distract funeral directors from celebrating life.