A controversial measure mandating condom use within the adult film industry in California has been rejected. The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health’s (Cal/OSHA) Standards Board actually voted 3-2 in favor of the measure. However, four votes were required for the measure to pass (one member was absent, and another spot on the seven-member board is currently vacant).
Proponents argued that statewide mandatory condom use, which is already required for the adult film industry in Los Angeles County, would result in a safer work environment for performers. But that claim has been rebuked by many of the performers themselves who argue it would not only hurt the industry’s bottom line but would ultimately make their jobs less safe.
“I know you guys work really hard and have our best interests at stake, but we need you to work with us to find a solution,” adult film actress SiouxsieQ told the committee, according to the LA Times. “When you criminalize sex work in any way, you make it more dangerous.”
When the measure failed to pass, members of the adult film industry who were present broke into applause.
However, proponents of the measure vowed to keep fighting for mandatory condom use and cited cases where performers have contracted HIV on adult film sets despite the supposed rigorous testing standards that are currently in place.
“People have suffered serious consequences due to lack of regulation in this industry,” said Michael Weinstein of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.