BUSINESS

California porn producers, AIDS activists battle over condom use

TAGs: porn

Last October, adult film director John Stagliano voiced concern that the recent news of a performer’s HIV-positive test result could lead to a government crackdown on California’s throbbing porn industry. Stagliano’s fears are one step closer to being realized as California’s Occupational Safety & Health Standards (OSHA) Board considers proposals to prevent future HIV/STD transmission among porn stars.

california-porn-producers

This is a serious subject, so we chose the least erotic photo we could find.

According to a copy of the 17-page draft proposal obtained by the Associated Press, porn producers would be responsible for seeing that their onscreen talent use “condoms or other barrier protection to prevent genital and oral contact with the blood or (any other bodily fluids) of another person.” Condoms could not be used with multiple partners. Body areas contaminated with bodily fluids will have to be hosed off and/or sandblasted between sexual acts. Sex toys are to be cleaned. Performers also can’t share a razor. (Even for chopping out lines?)

Producers feel the proposals would negatively impact their product, and with it, their bottom lines. Hustler magnate Larry Flynt believes porn audiences are turned off at the sight of condoms, because thinking about the potentially negative consequences of sex harshes their horny. Vivid honcho Steve Hirsch believes a lot of producers will ditch the San Fernando Valley for more permissive jurisdictions (Nevada? Iran?) if California’s proposals are adopted.

Before the seven-member OSHA Board decides whether to go ahead with the plan, they’re holding a public meeting in Los Angeles on June 7. Should be an interesting crowd. What if a spontaneous condom-free protest orgy breaks out? Sadly, the possibility of that is slim, as there will be a number of far less free-spirited souls present.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) – which filed the original complaint in 2009 that led to these proposals – believes condom-free porn encourages its audience to act likewise. Sort of like how the popularity of Jackass encourages one to staple one’s nuts to a toilet seat.

AHF played a significant role in last year’s closure of Adult Industry Medical (AIM), the clinic that tested performers for HIV and other STDs on a monthly basis. AIM allowed producers access to their records to ensure a performer was ‘clean’ prior to a shoot, but AHF claimed this violated the performers’ right to medical privacy and filed a lawsuit. LA County health authorities felt obliged to act, and shut AIM down.

In the subsequent absence of a structured testing system, AHF is playing their condom card as the only possible solution. Despite the fact that condoms aren’t 100% effective (which we know, because abstinence-only education taught us so). Despite AIM’s claim that, under their watch, HIV rates among porn actors were less than that of the general population.

Ironically, the only group that doesn’t seem to have been allowed a real voice on this issue are the porn performers themselves – you know, the only people directly affected by the use or non-use of condoms. Sorta like how US poker players weren’t allowed to decide for themselves whether they wanted to risk playing with internationally-based online poker sites. Texas Hold’Em? California Spread’Em? In the US of A, it’s debatable as to which activity will leave you more well and truly fucked.

Comments

views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of CalvinAyre.com