Mayor de Blasio: Bloomberg’s Metzitzah B’Peh Regulation To Temporarily Stay In Place

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Mayor Bill de Blasio named Thursday Dr. Mary Bassett as Commissioner of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

“Protecting the health and safety of New Yorkers is our No.1 priority. We have built a progressive and diverse team committed to reaching every neighborhood and caring for its people—including its most vulnerable,” said Mayor de Blasio, at a press conference in City Hall.

“We don’t believe in a back-seat approach to protecting public health. We will be aggressive and innovative in tackling today’s epidemics. Whether it is protecting a community facing the loss of a hospital, or ensuring that all neighborhoods enable healthy choices as people eat, work and play, we will meet New Yorkers where they live and ensure their health—both mental and physical—is protected,” said incoming Health Commissioner Mary Bassett.

The appointment of Dr. Mary Bassett as Health commissioner is one of the most important roles in the de Blasio administration. Ms. Bassett served as a deputy commissioner in the department of health under Mayor Bloomberg.

In addressing Mr. Bloomberg’s nanny state obsession, the incoming commissioner endorsed most of the health regulations enacted by Bloomberg, but promised to engage with all communities.

“We know we can do better, communicating with communities across the City and listening to them,” Mayor de Blasio said. The mayor added that while he’s committed to stay true to the vision of promoting public health, the doors and ears of City Hall will be open in engaging with the various communities. “This is not top down,” he said.

Dr. Bassett also addressed Metzitzah B’Peh, saying the current policy of consent forms in place do not ban the practice of Bris Milah and therefore a model to follow. “The intention is to keep that in place, but we need to do a better job in listening to the communities’ concerns,” she said.

Mayor de Blasio agreed with the new commissioner. “We will keep them in place while searching for a solution that would make it more effective,” Mr. de Blasio announced.

But he added that while his main concern is the health of the children, the new administration will look for a better and more effective policy that will take in count the concerns of the Orthodox Jewish community.

The mayor said that the administration’s fundamental approach is the safety of children’s lives. “When it comes to this issue, I see it with the same prism – our job is to protect children,” he said. “The current approach can be better. That is what we are going to figure out with the community.”

“In the meantime, the forms will stay in place while we seek a better path,” the mayor stated.

(Jacob Kornbluh – YWN)




10 COMMENTS

  1. The regulation is a joke. No Mohel ever asks for a signed form. And the City has no idea who does or doesn’t do metzitza anyways. The City can’t station a cop in every NYC synagogue to see if there’s metzitza and insure a form is signed. So it couldn’t even come to the point where a Mohel would get the $75 ticket for not getting it signed.

    The regulation is like getting a parking ticket, except that a metitza ticket is unenforceable even if it is in the regulations. (And it is merely a administrative regulation enacted by the mayor not the legislature; it is not a law.)

  2. I must have been to about 100 Bris Milah’s that had metzitza since the regulation went into effect, and in not once instance did the mohel ask for or the parent sign that form.

  3. It’s interesting that the Non-Yidden think that MBP is part of the Mitzvah.
    If they would know that we only do it for health reasons they would be shocked.

  4. “If they would know that we only do it for health reasons they would be shocked. ”

    Especially since there is some real evidence that it is actually dangerous.

  5. Neiderman, what happened to you? You’ve gotten lost? Can you pull yourself away from the camera’s regarding the Stark case, for 5 minutes, and give us an explanation?

  6. You cant prevent crime with cameras, you can only catch criminals after the crime. But if a Mohel will perform a Bris with Metzitza w/o the parents sig. the health department can trace him very quick on cameras. just thinking!

  7. The parents are totally with the mohelim in ignoring this regulation. The parents don’t want to sign.

    And last time the city tried to figure out who was the mohel of a child that got an infection, they wanted to look at the mohel but the parents of the child refused to tell the city who the mohel even is!