NZ CITY, Auckland, New Zealand, 7 August 2002.

Make circumcision illegal - McClay

Children's Commissioner says the circumcision of boys should be made illegal, unless it is for good medical reasons

7 August 2002

The Children's Commissioner is to ask the Government to consider making the circumcision of boys illegal, unless it is for good medical reasons.

An Auckland pediatrician is concerned at the growing number of times he has had to perform corrective surgery after the initial operation went wrong.

The Royal College of Surgeons says it is aware of those concerns, and wants circumcisions only performed by GPs who have the proper qualifications.

Children's Commissioner Roger McLay says it seems to be a tradition that boys are circumcised because their fathers were.

He says that is no reason to do something that may infringe a baby's rights.

(File prepared 11 September 2002)