SEX GOGGLES

The porn industry in California could soon require stars to wear condoms and protective goggles

Californians will vote next year on a ballot measure that would require adult film performers to wear condoms during sex scenes. The California Safer Sex in the Adult Film Industry Act would also force producers to cover the cost of HIV and STD testing, vaccinations, and monitoring, and lets performers sue producers who fail to meet those obligations.

To the consternation of the adult film industry, the ballot measure will allow anyone in the state of California who spots a condom-less act to sue the film’s producers directly.

In an age where many porn stars run their own websites and produce their own clips for sale, performers say the bill will open them up to harassment and trolling from people more concerned with policing morals than health.

The Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation introduced the measure last year. The group is also backing a proposed change to California’s worker health and safety regulations that would require porn performers to wear safety equipment on all membranes exposed to bodily fluids, including protective goggles.

The adult film industry, in turn, protests that no one wants to watch people have sex in goggles.

Supporters of the condom measure include several HIV-positive adult film performers who said they contracted the virus on set.

The Free Speech Coalition, an adult industry trade group, disputes those claims, saying there has not been an on-set transmission of HIV since 2004. Industry rules require adult film performers to be tested for HIV every 14 days.

Once the epicenter of the global porn juggernaut, California’s adult film industry is struggling. Permits for porn films in the state plunged 90% from 2012 to 2013 as producers fled for looser regulatory climates in the US and abroad.

The industry blames Measure B, a 2013 law requiring condom use in films made in Los Angeles County, and says further regulation will drive remaining producers away.

LA County is home to the San Fernando Valley, the Hollywood of porn, where adult entertainment a decade ago was worth an estimated $4 billion in sales, according to the LA Times.

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