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June 16, 2017

Condoms In Porn Report Due at Next Standards Board Meeting

SACRAMENTO, Calif.—The Standards Board of the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) meets monthly, but even though there are currently two petitions pending that discuss health aspects of the adult content production industry, they weren't on the agenda of yesterday's Board meeting—but that didn't stop attorney Karen Tynan, who's represented several adult companies accused of Cal/OSHA violations, and Verta, Secretary of the Adult Performer Advocacy Committee, from pressing the Board to engage better with the adult industry. "I reminded the Standards Board that we have close collaboration between production companies and performers, and that we need for the next meeting to happen in Los Angeles so that workers can attend it, have their voices heard, and participate in creating the regulations," Tynan told AVN. "Really, it was just a reminder, and to be in front of the Standards Board and say, 'Hey, we're a real industry and we're here.' And Verta came from APAC, reminding them that APAC is a true stakeholder in this process and we want to work with the Board and we're here and ready to go." Also present at the Standards Board meeting was AIDS Healthcare Foundation's Public Health Consultant Adam Cohen, and as he apparently does every time the Board meets, pressed them to approve the petition filed by AHF that would require condoms and other "barrier protections" in addition to testing. "He gets up there with his laptop and his paternalistic comments," Tynan summarized. "He took great issue with the fact that there's no swabbing, and he asserts that no performers ever get their mouth or rectum swabbed. And he also took great issue with the fact that on the PASS website, the green check has a 14- and a 28-day date from testing. He was just up there disparaging the testing system, basically. "But you know, he never seems to utter those four letters, P-r-E-P," she added. "And I actually think that's important, that whenever AHF, and they always say, 'We're the world's largest HIV organization'—they never discuss the one thing that's 99.99 percent effective in the prevention of HIV, which is PrEP." But perhaps the most important thing to come out of yesterday's meeting was that the Board's Secretary Marley Hart requested that the Division (Cal/OSHA) provide an update on the status of the proposed adult film industry regulations, which she asked to be presented at the next Standards Board meeting, which will be July 20 in San Diego. "Per Marley Hart's request, they'll need to provide an update to the Board of where the regulations stand, where the advisory committee meetings stand," Tynan said. "We had one meeting in Oakland but we haven't had a meeting down in L.A. At the meeting last January in Oakland, we certainly didn't get all the way through many of the issues that are faced in creating a regulation, and as far as I understand it, Eric [Paul Leue, FSC Executive Director] has queried Cal/OSHA and has not received a response about an L.A. meeting so I think that this request for an update may get them moving a bit more. "I've sent a email to Eric just so we can have some performers at that meeting in July to speak during the public comment time, so that the performers can remind the Division and the Standards Board of our position, of the need for a meeting in the L.A. area and the outstanding issues that need to be addressed," she added. "It's really something that people should put on their calendars right now so people won't schedule production for July 20. I know that's always a big thing: People kind of look up at the date maybe a week out and go, 'Ohmigod, I'm working that day,' so it's important to get that date out there. I understand there won't be a vote or anything at the July 20 meeting, but it's a meeting that will have an update from the Division, and where the subject matter of the adult film industry will be on people's minds as far as the Standards Board looking for an update." Tynan also noted that July 20 is the first day of Comic Con 2017 in San Diego, and she invited all performers who'll be attending that event to take a couple of hours in the morning to make their views known to the Board regarding the prospective CalOSHA regulations. The Cal/OSHA Standards Board will be holding its July 20 meeting in Room 310 of the County Administration Center, 1600 Pacific Highway, San Diego 92101, beginning at 10 a.m.—and as they say, "Be there or be square!"

 
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