Porn, Condoms — and OSHA?

condoms

This week the AIDS Healthcare Foundation filed complaints with the California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health over the lack of condoms used on-screen in the porn industry. The complaint names 16 Los Angeles based production companies, and was prompted by adult film perfomer Michelle Avanti’s positive HIV test.

According to ABC news and the Associated Press:

“As I continued to do hardcore porn, I started catching STDs all the time,” said Michelle Avanti, a former porn actress and member of the Pink Cross Foundation, which offers support for adult industry workers. “My lower body hurt so badly and at times my private area felt like it was a blazing fire. I could no longer work because I caught so many STDs and infections. I believe that if condoms had been allowed to be used in my own films, I would not have suffered so many physical ailments and infections.”

The Los Angeles Times has reported that as many as 22 porn film performers have tested positive for HIV in the last five years. The news reignited concerns that the adult entertainment industry is not protecting actors from the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.

ABC reports that the group claims to have identified more than 60 videos recently filmed in the state in which the actors do not use condoms. I’ve done some market research in my time, but can you imagine?

Dean Fryer, California’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration spokesperson, is troubled by the lack of condoms.

“I’m concerned that a lot of producers are not using condoms or using film techniques so as to film a simulation rather than a sexual act,” Fryer said.

But Hustler publisher Larry Flynt says that’s the point. He told the Associated Press, “people who enjoy viewing adult films do not want to see people using condoms.” He continued on the economics of the issue:

“While it might provide some additional protection, the sales are not going to be there to make the effort worthwhile for the actors and actresses,” he said.

Head of Vivid Entertainment Steven Hirsch agrees and said that if condoms became mandatory in California, the adult film industry would likely leave the state.

Former porn actress Jan Meza is a proponent of regulation. She says when she asked first starting asking to use condoms in adult films in 2006 she was told she’d never work again. She continued to work, without condoms, and contracted herpes. Meza no longer works in the porn industry directly, but works to support performers who want to leave the industry.

Image Credit: Erik Cleves Kristensen, Flickr

  • Hi..
    In now days,we have to help our self and take care of health ourselves.
    So its depend on us,whether we want to use condoms for save our life or not.
    I appreciate your post because it makes people aware from this topic.

  • Producers of films and Healthcare people,both are right at their own side.
    But its now depend on people,what they want?whether they want to save their life or they want just entertainment.
    Nice post.

  • It’s such a difficult issue. Hopefully some day the porn industry and its critics will reach some kind of compromise or resolve.

  • Porn can have a strong influence on the actions of young viewers. The health of the actors and audience should come first.