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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update
CALIFORNIA: AIDS Group Seeks Los Angeles Referendum on Porn Star Condom Use
Alex Dobuzinskis
December 8, 2011
Reuters (12.05.11) - Thursday, December 08, 2011

The Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) said Monday it had submitted 71,000 signatures in support of a ballot initiative to force city officials to mandate the use of condoms on pornography sets as a condition of receiving a film permit. Los Angeles is home to the multibillion-dollar US porn industry, primarily in the sprawling San Fernando Valley suburb.

The number of signatures well-surpassed the 41,000 needed. If the signatures are certified by city officials, the initiative could go before voters in June 2012.

State officials say the porn industry is already covered by workplace rules that protect employees from blood-borne pathogens, and condoms are required in instances when performers could be exposed to infection. During the past five years, California Division of Occupational Safety and Health officials say they have levied more than $125,000 in fines against porn producers.

But AHF says Los Angeles should be doing its part to prevent infections as well, and it wants to bring the issue before city voters. "We're confident about our ability to win an initiative on an election," said AHF President Michael Weinstein. "We say, why continue to frustrate ourselves trying to get the politicians to stand up and do something, when the people seem to be ahead of them." Producers have said they may have to move the lucrative industry outside of California if regulations tighten.