Latest Information:
The Two-Way
12:39 pm
Tue January 17, 2012

Los Angeles Set To Approve Condom Requirement In Porn Shoots

The Los Angeles City Council is poised to approve a measure today that would require adult film stars to wear condoms when making films. The AP reports that last week, the council voted 11-1 for preliminary approval.

The new requirement is controversial in the porn industry. NPR's Alex Cohen explored the issue back in 2010. Essentially, the industry claims condoms hurt sales and their method of testing actors every 30 days is effective.

But over the years, the industry has faced a rash of HIV cases. In Dec. of 2010, one adult film star, came forward to say that even though he had complied with adult film regulations, he still contracted HIV.

According to NPR member station KPCC, the council's vote seeks to stop an already-approved ballott initiative, which would have let voters decide whether to require condoms. The council can approve it preemptively and save the $4 million the voting would cost and that's what they plan on doing today.

KPCC reports advocates of the initiative like Michael Weinstein of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation say "the ordinance will save lives:"

"'I think we're setting a great example. Why shouldn't Los Angeles be the safe sex capital of America?' he said.

"Weinstein's group sponsored the ballot initiative to stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases in the multi-billion dollar porn industry that's based in the San Fernando Valley.

"'You really can't argue that people who go to work at a job really ought [not] to be putting their health at risk,' Weinstein said. 'I mean, we put a thing at the conclusion of a film saying no animal was hurt in the making of this film. We can't say that about these films when it comes to people – real life people,' Weinstein said.

LA Weekly reports that the ordinance would require companies to agree to the condom requirement before they are issued film permits. The rule would only apply to location shoots, but LA Weekly notes that most porn is made on-location.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.