‘Barbaric cemetery practice has been stopped’
A FATHER whose young son is buried at a Brisbane cemetery says a council officer told him graves are not flooded and it's a "barbaric" thing to do.
But for the past month, Lord Mayor Graham Quirk and Lifestyle and Community Services chairman Peter Matic have defended spiking graves as "best practice" to compact soil.
Greg Reidy's three-year-old son, Daniel, was buried at Mt Gravatt Cemetery after he died of a rare bone marrow disease in 1991.
Just last year he was forced to mow his son's grave.
It was Mr Reidy's photo of a Mt Gravatt Cemetery grave with a hose running into it, a practice known as spiking, that made headlines earlier this year.
"Nowhere did they (the council) say they'd be shoving a hose down his grave where he's buried with his teddy bear and his favourite blanket," he said.
"It's like someone digging him up, it's desecration, plain desecration.
Greg Reidy told the Southern Star a council employee at Mt Gravatt Cemetery phoned him on Friday afternoon after he had made another complaint about the practise.
"He said ... they've stopped the spiking of the graves, the flooding of the graves," he said.
"He said Mt Gravatt doesn't do it anymore and Pinnaroo doesn't do it.
"He said it's a barbaric thing to do, it's not respectful … He said they would be looking at other avenues of settling the ground."
Mr Reidy says it is not the first time the council has denied the practise since his son was buried at the cemetery 27 years ago - but he hopes this time it is true.
"Well, it means to me that like, in my head when I go up there and I see a child's grave, I know that council hasn't stuck a hose down the grave and popped the coffin," he said.
"I hate to say this, but I really think they were giving me lip service. Only time will tell if they're telling the truth."
"I'd love to speak to the Lord Mayor face-to-face and ask him why do you allow council workers to stick a hose down a child's grave?," he said.
Cr Steve Griffiths (Moorooka) said he had written to the Lord Mayor to ask for a briefing on the issue.
"If it is true, then I think it's good news for residents who've been traumatised by how the council's been running its Mt Gravatt Cemetery," he said.
The Lord Mayor's office has been contacted for comment.