Industry News

LA Files Suit to keep Mandatory Condoms off the Ballot


LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles City Attorney’s office has filed a lawsuit to keep the June 2012 ballot free of a measure that would require porn actors to wear condoms during film shoots.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, city attorneys say the AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s proposed measure is unnecessary and will waste taxpayer money.

According to the lawsuit, there are already state laws mandating workplace safety which address the need for protective barriers to be used when workers are exposed to blood borne pathogens, such as HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.

The filing urges the court to take immediate action rather than wait until after the election to invalidate the measure by finding it “patently illegal” because that “would undermine the public trust.”
The AIDS Healthcare Foundation has already collected more than 71,000 unverified voter signatures and has submitted them to city officials for verification, said Michael Weinstein, the advocacy group’s president.
“I think it’s extraordinary to attempt to thwart the will of 71,000 voters who under the laws of the city of Los Angeles wish to see this measure put before the voters,” said Weinstein.

To get on the city’s ballot, advocates must get 41,183 verified signatures from Los Angeles voters. If passed, the measure would require porn producers to agree to have their actors use condoms in adult films shot in Los Angeles in order to obtain permits to film in the city.

Weinstein said it shouldn’t cost taxpayers any money to include the proposition since the election will be held no matter what.
“I’m not an elections scholar but I’m not aware of prior restraint on voter’s ability to have their voices heard on an initiative,” said Weinstein.

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation has made a number of unsuccessful legal efforts to require condoms in adult films, including multiple attempts to move state legislation and lawsuits.
The city’s San Fernando Valley is the heart of the multi-billion dollar American porn industry.

The Free Speech Coalition, a trade association for the porn industry, praised the city’s decision to take the matter to court.
FSC Executive Director Diane Duke argued the AHF measure squanders its donor resources.

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