Ben Shalem is a registered association (RA 58-029-692-9), founded in April 1997 as an initiative of a group of anti-circumcision activists, led by Rafi Rosen and Rami Yovel. The club was originally registered as "The Association Against Infant Genital Cuts". In 2008 its name was officially changed to "Ben Shalem".
The goals of the organization are:
- Publish information about circumcision damage in public.
- Provide legal help to parents who do not allow their sons to be circumcised.
In January 1998, a petition was filed with the Israel Supreme Court. The main argument of the petition was that circumcision is a violation of a constitutional human right. The court did not hear the petition in the case and it was rejected after two hearings without arguments. The petition was picked up by the media. Interior Minister Eliyahu Suissa of Shas was interviewed on television and said that the members of the organization should be thrown out the window. Josef Lapid attacked him for this statement on television.
Ben Shalem is a member of the International Committee of the Red Cross.