Greensprings Natural Cemetery Becomes a Certified Living Wage Employer

Newfield’s Greensprings Natural Cemetery is easily one of our most unique Certified Living Wage Employers. Located atop a picturesque hill surrounded by 8,000 acres of forest, the non-profit burial ground doubles as a nature preserve comprised of awe-inspiring meadows and woodlands.

Greensprings turns our country’s conventional approach to burial on its head by providing low-density ground inhumations, biodegradable caskets, and natural stone markers — environmentally sustainable practices that allow the dead to return to the earth in a natural and dignified fashion. Its sprawling, well-kept habitats help preserve grassland birds and critical pollinators such as bees.

While Greensprings emphasizes death with dignity, it also endeavors to provide its employees with lives of dignity by going far above New York State’s wage floor to pay them each a Living Wage. This approach benefits Greensprings by making it competitive in attracting excellent employees.

In addition to ensuring the economic security of its workforce, Greensprings seeks to advance economic justice by minimizing the costs of burials to ensure accessibility across classes. Its holistic ethos promoting environmental, social, and economic justice is certainly rare among private sector employers.

Greensprings President Herb Engman says that his organization’s participation in the TCWC’s Certified Living Wage Employer program “joins us with like-minded other employers who think as we do.” He is hopeful that as more businesses sign onto this program, the Living Wage will become the undisputed norm in the area.

The Living Wage in Tompkins County is studied every two years by the Alternatives Federal Credit Union Biennial Living Wage Study. If you are a business or organization who pays at least a Living Wage, you can apply to the Tompkins County Workers’ Center for Certification to recognize your commitment to fair pay for workers. If you have any questions about how your business (or employer) can get certified, contact TCWC at (607) 269-0409 or