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June 24, 2016

APAC Asks Weinstein to Meet, Pull Flawed Ballot Initiative

LOS ANGELES—Members of the Adult Performer Advocacy Committee (APAC) and the group Californians Against Worker Harassment—which is sponsored by the Free Speech Coalition (FSC)—are urging Michael Weinstein, head of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) and sole backer of the November ballot initiative that would make condoms mandatory in adult productions throughout California, to meet with them and consider pulling the controversial measure before June 30. “We hope to have an honest public discussion, to find commonality, and to explain why the initiative, as written, is so dangerous to performer health and safety. As the sole proponent of this measure, we ask that you—not a surrogate—attend the meeting, as you are the only one able to remove it by the June 30 deadline,” the groups said in a letter to Weinstein. The June 30 date, according to the California Secretary of State, is the Initiative and Legislative Measure Qualification Deadline. The Safer Sex in Adult Film Act would allow for private citizens to sue adult performers when a condom is not visible in an adult production.  Performers—led by APAC President Chanel Preston, APAC Board Member Ela Darling and CAWH campaign manager and FSC President Eric Paul Leue—asked Weinstein to attend a public meeting with them at noon Tuesday, June 28, at the Andaz West Hollywood. “As the sole proponent and funder of the Safer Sex in Adult Film Act, we are calling on you to pull this dangerous initiative from the November ballot by the deadline of June 30, before any performers are harmed,” Preston, Darling and Leue wrote in their letter. “We ask that you personally meet with us on Tuesday, June 28, to discuss a way forward. You have repeatedly stated that you want the best for adult film performers, however the largest performer-led organization, Adult Performer Advocacy Committee (APAC) is opposed to this initiative.” The letter asks Weinstein to work with APAC directly on regulations for the following reasons: • This month, Cal/OSHA announced it will convene a working group including performers and performer groups on new regulations to protect performers, beginning this summer. These talks represent a first for Cal/OSHA, and a chance to finally have performers' voices heard on regulations that affect them. • Both the major political parties in California, Republican and Democrat, representing over 13 million voters, have officially opposed this measure, given the threat it poses to performers safety and privacy. They have been joined by major HIV/AIDS groups, including SF AIDS Foundation and AIDS Project LA. • AHF's own representatives have admitted that the initiative will allow performers to be sued personally when a condom is not visible. This poorly drafted provision will lead to profiteering, harassment, privacy violations and outright physical danger to thousands of adult performers. “Last year, the California Legislature passed SB 1253 (Steinberg) for situations just like this,” the letter reads. “An initiative containing so many flaws, and an issue being addressed by a state entity is reasonable justification to withdraw the initiative from the November ballot.” The meeting, which is open to the press, but could become a closed meeting if participants feel that would lead to more productive discussions, is set for noon Tuesday, June 28, in the Studio 1 room at Andaz West Hollywood, 8401 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, CA. For more information, visit APAC-USA.com.

 
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