LA County voters to decide on condoms in porn films

Los Angeles County voters are to decide if condom use should be obligatory for pornographic actors, after AIDS campaigners said they had collected enough signatures for a November ballot.

The campaigners submitted more than 360,000 signatures to support enforcing condom use in the US porn movie industry, which is based in the San Fernando Valley north of Los Angeles.

Michael Weinstein, president of AIDS Healthcare Foundation -- one of five groups which spearheaded the poll push -- on Thursday said he was particularly happy as this is a White House election year, so turnout is likely to be high.

"We are extremely pleased to learn that our County of Los Angeles ballot measure to require adult film producers to obtain public health permits has successfully qualified for the November ballot," he said.

"This ordinance, modeled after the County's similar health permitting process for tattoo and massage parlors and bathhouses, should go a long way to improve safety on the sets for adult film performers.

He noted that the City of Los Angeles already voted in January to require porn actors to wear condoms on set, the latest move in a battle between AIDS activists and the US adult film industry.

"We look forward to taking this measure directly to voters throughout the County of Los Angeles in November," he said.

California porn film makers were forced to suspend production temporarily last year after an actor tested positive for HIV, the virus which causes AIDS, in the latest such disruption to the multi-billion-dollar industry.

Film L.A. Inc., which issues permits for film companies shooting in the West Coast city, said about five percent of the 45,500 permit days the agency issues per year are for pornographic film shoots.

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