Rubber up or hit the road.
That’s essentially the message proponents of a new ballot initiative are sending to the adult film industry in California.
The measure to require condoms in all California porn production was proposed by Michael Weinstein, president of the Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation. Weinstein has previously come under scrutiny for referring to PrEP med Truvada as a “party drug.”
The move in California would mirror similar guidelines voted on by Los Angeles County in 2012.
LA County was once a mecca for the adult industry, but since the new rules were adopted in 2012, permits for adult films have fallen 90% by some estimates.
If the bareback ban moves statewide, tens of millions of dollars a year may be lost in tax revenue as production leaves California for good.
“It’s another milestone — the qualification of this initiative,” Weinstein said Wednesday. “We’ve taken polls that show, statewide, 71% support. We’re very confident that we will be successful on election day.”
The industry will put up a lofty fight to squash the initiative, arguing that they already have adequate testing programs in place — performers are tested every 14 days for HIV, and there hasn’t been an infection in the regulated industry since 2004, the L.A. Times reports.
“If the proposed initiative were to pass, adult performers would immediately be targeted by stalkers and profiteers, who would use the initiatives’ sue-a-performer provision to harass and extort adult performers,” Diane Duke, chief executive of the Free Speech Coalition, a Canoga Park-based trade association for the adult film industry, said. “This is an unconscionable initiative that would take a legal and safe industry and push its performers into the shadows.”