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April 25, 2016

LA Daily News Interviews New FSC Exec. Director Eric Paul Leue

LOS ANGELES—In an interview published in Sunday's edition of the Los Angeles Daily News—on the front page, no less—reporter Susan Abram interviewed the new Executive Director of the Free Speech Coalition, Eric Paul Leue. Not surprisingly, the interview focused on the industry's fight to make adult movies without being unnecessarily burdened by condoms and other barrier protections, with experience having proved that the widespread testing protocols put in place by FSC's medical advisors and carried out by the official industry testing clinics, all of which is coordinated by the Performer Availability Screening Services (PASS), work well. But as Abram picked up, both FSC and AIDS Healthcare Foundation claim to have performers' health as a primary goal, so she asked Leue how the two organizations differ in their approach? "A very easy comparison to make is if we look at the Republicans’ value to reproduction rights and the Democratic values to reproductive rights," Leue replied. "The Republicans try to say you are inept to make choices for yourself, and so we’re going to tell you what to do and can’t do, and we will take complete control over your rights and your bodies, whereas the Democrats, say here are all your different choices and you should be allowed to make your own choices because it’s your body and you’re supposed to take agency over your own body. We will give you the explanation, the knowledge, the understanding and tools to look after yourself the best way possible. We’re all about agency over one’s own body, choices, letting people be responsible adults and also knowing what’s good for them and what’s not for them. I always see myself more as the Bernie or the Hillary, and Michael Weinstein as the Trump or Cruz." Abram also asked about Measure B, which mandates sexual barriers, and the upcoming ballot initiative, which not only requires those same "protections" but also establishes a legal framework for adult content viewers to sue both the makers of the material and those who perform in it if they don't use barriers—and also establishes a governmental position for AHF president Michael Weinstein, who could only be fired by a vote of both houses of the California legislature. "The problem is, it’s not about worker safety," Leue noted. "It’s not about sexual health. It is not about protecting people from something. This is completely about harassing workers. We need to stop pushing an industry that is legal and safe out of this state. ... Harassing workers, no matter if we agree with the job or not, is never the right thing." Leue also revealed that the industry and several of its supporters will be forming a Political Action Committee (PAC) to oppose the ballot measure, in part to keep adult production in the San Fernando Valley where it has flourished since the early 1980s and in part to stop adult worker harassment by outsiders who aren't working in the best interests of the industry. "We want people to understand that our industry takes itself and the well-being of workers as incredibly important and serious," Leue declared. "We’re not the 1970s Netflix interpretation of what the adult film industry is. We have accountants and HR workers and distributors. ...  We know that companies have left from [sic] outside of the Valley and have left the state completely because they said they don’t want to be here for the fallout. There are a lot of third-party vendors benefiting from our industry, from cleaning companies to set rentals, to set dressers to makeup artists. We are a serious business." The full article can be read here. Pictured: Eric Paul Leue lecturing on sex education to students on World AIDS Day.

 
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