Report comment

Please fill in the form to report an unsuitable comment. Please state which comment is of concern and why. It will be sent to our moderator for review.


This is not a political issue. This is strictly a legal issue concerning the application of religious beliefs on coronial law. Politics has no place in this discussion. But seeing as he is wading into the fray, by prioritising the beliefs of Jewish and Muslim citizens over the beliefs of all other faith and non-faith denominations, Mr Corbyn has inferred that the rest of his constituents are of a lesser value to him. This is not a wise move.

This is a very difficult issue, and one which the courts will have to consider carefully. The difficulty is that a coroner's statutory duty has been found to always, or almost always override religious and cultural objection (see R (Rotsztein) v HM Senior Coroner for Inner London North [2015] EWHC 2764 (Admin)). However, in Rotsztein, this was in relation to post-mortems of Jewish persons and the interplay between the requirement to carry out invasive post-mortems if required against religious and cultural objections. In the present case, it seems a more obtuse point - if there is a back log of post-mortems, or once the autopsy has been concluded, should persons of Jewish or Muslim faiths be put to the front of the queue because their religious views require prompt burial?

All post-mortems must be carried out without undue delay to fulfil the statutory obligation under regulation 11. "Undue delay" must take into account how busy the service is.

Seems to me that the coroner here is stuck between a rock and a hard place - process those bodies where religion demands quick burial but to the detriment of all other users and risk a JR from families of non-faith backgrounds; or process all bodies on a cab-rank basis but risk JR from families of Jewish/Islamic background.

In my opinion, all families should have the right to have the bodies of their loved ones returned to them without undue delay - faith (or non-faith) should play no part in this in my opinion.

Your details