Los Angeles County Health Officials Recommend Condom Use for Adult Film Actors
Los Angeles County health officials this week sent 400 letters to directors and producers of adult films urging condom use during sex scenes, the Los Angeles Times reports. The letters also advise industry workers to get vaccinated against hepatitis A and B (Liu, Los Angeles Times, 10/8).
Last month, the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration fined two Van Nuys-based adult film companies for allegedly allowing actors to perform unprotected sex acts. The fines come after an HIV outbreak among adult film performers in April (California Healthline, 9/21). Assembly Labor and Employment Committee Chair Paul Koretz (D-West Hollywood) in August recommended 13 practices, including condom use and more frequent HIV testing, for the industry to voluntarily implement to prevent the spread of disease among adult film actors (California Healthline, 8/19).
However, the Times reports that to date "the industry has mostly ignored the government," the Times reports. According the Times, about 17% of adult film actors currently use condoms in films.
Dr. Jonathan Fielding, director of the county Department of Health Services, said, "We think this is a matter of worker protection." With regard to statements included in the letter, Fielding said, "We don't have the authority to enforce this, so this is our recommendation."
Sharon Mitchell, executive director of the Adult Industry Medical Health Care Foundation, said, "Even though a lot of people might be turning a blind eye, they can't ignore the fact that the issue is under the microscope of the government" (Los Angeles Times, 10/8).