Industry News

Cal-OSHA sides with AHF against the City of LA on Condom issue

NL-Please note that this is a press release put out BY AHF. But according to it, the city of LA  is wrong, and Cal OSHA thinks they can tie use of a condom to adult film permits.

Opinion by Cal OSHA legal counsel contradicts Los Angeles City Attorney’s March 2011 report claiming the City does not have authority to condition issuance of adult film permits to condom use
In its evaluation, Cal OSHA counsel noted, “…State law does not preempt such action by the City because the City does not seek to enact an occupational health and safety standard but rather a public health standard applicable to any film activity (regardless of employment) within the city boundaries.”

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In response to a push by AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) to compel the City of Los Angeles to tie the issuance of its adult film permits to condom use in adult film productions, a recent opinion letter by Cal/OSHA’s (California’s Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Occupational Safety and Health) legal counsel sharply contradicts a March 2011 report in which the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office claimed it did not have the authority to condition issuance of adult film permits to condom use.


“Presently it (Cal OSHA) mandates that all employees exposed to blood borne pathogens wear protective barriers, which includes the use of condoms. CAL-OSHA has been responsive to complaints and has several open investigations, including production companies affiliated with Larry Flynt Publications and Playboy.”
In the initial City report, dated March 22, 2011 titled, “Mechanisms Necessary to Enable the City’s Film Permit Process to Require Workplace Safety in the Production of All Adult Films,’ Kimberly Miera, Deputy City Attorney, City of Los Angeles, on behalf of City Attorney Carmen A. Trutanich, wrote:
“It is the opinion of this Office (City Attorney, City of Los Angeles) that the current permit language covers the use of condoms on all permitted adult film sets to the extent that the City may legally do so. Based on the current permit language, along with the jurisdictional concerns in regulating workplace safety issues, our Office recommends the permit language remains unchanged and this report be noted and filed.”


However, in a researched opinion letter dated July 20th titled, ‘Position of the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health Concerning Possible Conditions on the City’s Film Permits Issued to Adult Film Producers,’ written in response to the City Attorney’s March report and addressed and sent to ‘the Honorable City Council, City of Los Angeles,’ James D. Clark, Staff Counsel for California’s Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, Legal Unit, Southern California, wrote:
“It is the Division’s (of Occupational Safety and Health) position that State law does not preempt such action by the City because the City does not seek to enact an occupational health and safety standard but rather a public health standard applicable to any film activity (regardless of employment relationship) within the City boundaries.


“Cal OSHA and Mr. Clark have provided a very clear and compelling case as to why the City of Los Angeles can condition the issuing of film permits to adult film producers based upon compliance with condom use in their film productions, as currently required under state statute,” said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. “Ordinarily, state agencies are given deference by cities and local bodies in situations such as this, and we ask the Los Angeles City Council to do so in this matter in order to better protect workers and performers working in the adult film industry here in Los Angeles.”
In her March report to City Council, Deputy City Attorney Miera also confirmed that condom use in adult film production in the state is required, writing, “Presently it (Cal OSHA) mandates that all employees exposed to blood borne pathogens wear protective barriers, which includes the use of condoms. CAL-OSHA has been responsive to complaints and has several open investigations, including production companies affiliated with Larry Flynt Publications and Playboy.”
Background on AHF’s Adult Film Worker Safety Efforts


Since an outbreak of as many as 20 HIV infections in the adult film industry in California several years ago—and the revelation that another adult film performer tested HIV positive last October—AHF and other AIDS advocates have spearheaded a multipronged campaign to improve worker safety by requiring condom use by adult film actors. As part of the effort, AHF has sued local Los Angeles County public health officials to enforce existing workplace safety regulations; it has lobbied for an overhaul of state workplace safety measures covering adult film sets in both California and Florida (the two largest production centers); it has filed worker safety complaints with state regulators against both adult film producers as well as adult talent agencies, it has sought legislation in Sacramento to more clearly codify adult film safety regulations.


Three outbreaks of HIV in the industry and an ongoing epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in California’s adult film industry prompted AHF to take a stepped up and ongoing role in trying to improve worker safety in the adult film industry. According to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH), workers in the adult film industry are ten times more likely to be infected with a sexually transmitted disease than members of the population at large. LADPH has observed that many workers suffer multiple infections, with some performers having four or more separate infections over the course of a year. In addition, LADPH has stated that as many as 25 industry-related cases of HIV have been reported since 2004.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and services to more than 174,000 individuals in 27 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific region and Eastern Europe. www.aidshealth.org

Contacts
AIDS Healthcare Foundation
Ged Kenslea
Communications Director
+1.323.791.5526 [mobile]
+1.323.308.1833 [work]
[email protected]
 or 
Lori Yeghiayan


Associate Director of Communications
+1.323.377-4312 [mobile]
+1.323.308.1834 [work]
[email protected]

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