San Francisco circumcision ban headed for November ballot 

Most bans in San Francisco are enacted by the Board of Supervisors, but come November, it sounds like voters will have the opportunity to jump on the ban wagon by deciding whether to ban male circumcision.

San Francisco resident Lloyd Schofield said Thursday he is “on track” to have enough  signatures to place his proposed measure on the November ballot that would make it illegal to “circumcise, excise, cut or mutilate the foreskin, testicle or penis of another person who has not attained the age of 18.”

Schofield has until April 26 to submit 7,168 valid signatures to make it onto the ballot. He would not disclose how many signatures were collected at this point.

Schofield said he became the proponent of the local ballot measure after being asked to champion a local bill during a July symposium on circumcision held at the UC Berkeley. Schofield said he was approached by those affiliated with a group pushing for a federal bill to “end male genital mutilation in the U.S.,” according to its website, mgmbill.org.

He said he thought about it for two weeks and then decided to do it. “I always knew this was something wrong to do to a child,” he said.

The signature-gathering is being run by a committee of about 10, he said. Schofield would not divulge the identities of the committee members, but said several are spending their own money to pay for signature-gatherers to help out. Schofield said he is out there himself — not being paid — collecting the signatures outside grocery stores and in neighborhoods like SoMa, the Castro, the Haight and Noe Valley.

“We say: ‘Would you like to help protect the children from forced circumcision? This is a human-rights issue,’” Schofield said.

The proposed measure would assess of up to $1,000 and up to one year in jail for someone who performs a circumcision.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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