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Historic law on condom use in porn films passed in Los Angeles

Washington, Wed, 25 Jan 2012 ANI
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Washington, Jan 25 (ANI): Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa signed a historic new law on Monday, which will make it compulsory for porn performers to wear condoms while acting in areas requiring a city film permit.

 

It is a significant law because LA's San Fernando Valley is the capital of the multibillion-dollar porn industry. Many porn companies have voiced opposition to the rule. They say adult films featuring condoms don't sell as well, and that some performers on lengthy film shoots prefer not to use condoms.

 

Some have threatened to move film shoots outside city boundaries, the LA Times reported.

 

The mayor's approval was a huge victory for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation based in the city. It has waged a lonely battle for years arguing to protect the health of porn performers. Production across the industry has been halted several times over the last 10 years following concerns that adult film performers have been infected with HIV. Two porn performers who were infected with HIV have since become vocal proponents of a mandatory condom policy.

 

However, there are a couple of potential loopholes in the city ordinance. It does not apply to filming that occurs on certified sound stages that don't require film permits. And porn studios, which often use homes in the Valley and backyards to film, could opt to move their shoots into LA County's other 87 cities or in unincorporated areas of the county.

 

The other big question is how the city plans to enforce the new rule. The City Council has asked the Los Angeles Police Department, city attorney's office and the state's workplace safety agency to figure out how to enforce the rule.

 

The council approved the porn ordinance earlier this month, after the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, which wrote the proposed rule, gathered enough signatures to ask voters to decide on the issue during the June election. Feeling that voters would approve the ordinance, the city council decided to approve the new rule to avoid spending 4 million dollars on a special election.

 

The AIDS group has already launched a similar signature-gathering drive to mandate condom use through the LA County Department of Public Health. They are hoping to get the issue on the ballot for the November election or pressure the LA County Board of Supervisors to pass its own measure.

 

California's occupational safety and health agency has already stated that porn performers must wear condoms during filming as part of existing rules protecting workers from bodily fluids. But the fines are fairly small and the rule is largely ignored. (ANI)

 

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