NYC: Metzitzah B’Peh Hearing and Injunction Postponed Due to Hurricane Sandy


bris-milahA hearing schedule for November 14 to implement a requirement for parental consent for metzitzah b’peh has now been postponed due to Hurricane Sandy.

It has been several months since several Jewish organizations and three rabbis filed suit against the New York City Department of Health (DOH), seeking an injunction against regulations that would illegally inhibit and criticize a form of circumcision that has been safely practiced by Jewish people across the world for thousands of years.

Back in mid-October, Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York postponed the requirement.

The suit filed by the Jewish organizations had argued that the DOH is attempting to discourage metzitzah b’peh by requiring all mohalim to distribute a form stating that MBP can lead to serious health risks. That regulation, they said, violates both the rights to free speech and freedom of religion.

The suit argued that “the government cannot compel the transmission of messages that the speaker does not want to express-especially when the speaker is operating in an area of heightened First Amendment protection, such as a religious ritual.”

The lawsuit is supported by affidavits from experts in infectious diseases, epidemiology and statistical analysis that question the assessment and methodology of the DOH in forming its opinion about the safety of MBP.

Hurricane Sandy has caused a backlog of cases and the courts must tend to prior cases before commencing new hearings, so the injunction against the implementation of the rule has been deferred.

Lawyers for both sides contend that it will probably be several months before the hearing wll take place, as two courthouses in Manhattan were terribly flooded during the hurricane, and that the court calendar has been thrown into chaos. Many cases, especially those in which injunctions have been issued, are likely to be kept on hold for months, as the court system tries to work its way through the backlog.

The new regulations had first been expected to be implemented on Sunday, October 21. It was then temporarily postponed until November 14, and has now been postponed again.

{Noam Newscenter}


  1. be prepared for all your rights & freedoms to be taken away slowly but surely-not in one shot-& soon WE will not be able to live in the USA as frum yidden. all our rights & freedoms are being taken from us one at a time & the USA is about to become what used to be communist russia.

    pack your bags NOW & head for Eretz Yisroel, while the pressure is not so hard & before america is attacked by iran. for then it will be too late & everyone will be leaving in poverty, wishing they had left-now-when they were told.

    BOTTOM LINE:this is all the work of Hashem & the choice is yours if you wish to leave now or wait & suffer ahead C”V