More HIV cases in the LA porn industry

From the Los Angeles Times:

Despite porn industry assurances that an adult film actress’ recent positive HIV test is the first since a 2004 outbreak shut down production for a month, Los Angeles County health officials said Thursday that at least 16 additional unpublicized cases of HIV have been confirmed in adult film performers.

The newly released data bring the number of HIV cases in porn performers in the last five years to 22, including the case disclosed this week.

The report — and what state and county health officials perceive as stonewalling by the Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation, which tests porn performers for sexually transmitted diseases — is bringing renewed scrutiny to the estimated $12-billion-a-year industry’s long history of resisting regulation and condom use.

Since 2004, 2,378 people who identified themselves as adult film industry performers have tested positive for chlamydia in Los Angeles County. An additional 1,357 tested positive for gonorrhea and 15 for syphilis, according to data released Thursday by the county’s health department.

Public health experts tried again in 2007 and 2008 to require condom use in adult films, but no lawmaker agreed to sponsor legislation, said Paula Tavrow, an assistant professor at UCLA’s School of Public Health. But porn industry executives and officials, including its advocacy group the Free Speech Coalition, argue that they do a good job of self-regulation and say that the rates of HIV infection remain low. If laws are passed requiring condom use, they said, porn production would be pushed underground or outside California.

John Stagliano, a former porn star and president of Evil Angel productions, said: “The market determines whether or not this will be shown. A government agency the size of Los Angeles couldn’t stop it. It’s not going to change.”

7 responses

  1. Also worth reading from the LA times, this 2003 piece on the sex industry, ‘See No Evil’.

  2. disillusioned

    Worth debunking is this self-serving piece of nonsense by a pornography director:
    http://bppa.blogspot.com/2009/06/latest-hiv-in-porn-panic-rumor-control.html
    Apparantly it’s gay pornography actors who are the problem and working without condoms is actually protecting the women in heterosexual pornography. Who knew?
    The writer – who goes on at great length I must forewarn, in an exceedingly dull fashion as is his norm – also takes great pains to criticise those who would push for increased accountability for the industry.
    There are no limits to the propaganda that ernest and his brethern will pollute the blogosphere – and wider media – with in order to maintain their profiteering at the expense of women.

  3. This is what I don’t comprehend.

    “If laws are passed requiring condom use, they said, porn production would be pushed underground or outside California…’The market determines whether or not this will be shown. A government agency the size of Los Angeles couldn’t stop it.’

    Since threats of turning legal California prostitution into an illegal black market are being issued by pimpographers, how about a group of us threaten that if CA pornographers don’t start using condoms 100% of the time we’re going to find them and put AIDS-covered bullets in their brains? I’d rather business weren’t conducted by might-makes-right, but if them’s the rules I’m getting a plane ticket to LAX, a rifle, and the porno version of Back Stage.

    Any “businessmen” who boasts about how they’re going to treat their employees in illegal, dangerous ways if authorities don’t back the fuck off with safety regulations should be arrested on charges of intent to commit a crime.

  4. “Any “businessmen” who boasts about how they’re going to treat their employees in illegal, dangerous ways if authorities don’t back the fuck off with safety regulations should be arrested on charges of intent to commit a crime.”

    Exactly! I wonder why the US federal government, or the state government of California, don’t crackdown on them. Do they have a stake, an interest in this horrendous, dehumanising “business” ? They wage a “drug war” yet aren’t ready to attack the form of modern-day slavery which is the porn industry.

    “The market determines whether or not this will be shown.” This is disgusting ! This means that it’s the consumers (wanking middle-aged men who have never grasped that women are human beings and not lumps of bikini-clad meat, no doubt) who decide on the fate of these exploited women!

  5. The simple fact is that those women (and men) are not seen as important. As the ‘See No Evil’ article points out, the legal brothels in Nevada ‘work’ in that they don’t pass STIs on to the johns, who are seen as important.

    The contrast between the porn industry in California and the legal brothels in Nevada is there for a reason, it’s called the patriarchy.

  6. […] Feminism, pornography harms, pro-sex anti-porn, quote of the day. trackback Following on from this post, Ann Bartow at Feminist Law Professors has this to say: The author’s assertion that lack of […]

  7. […] demand from paying (ie Western) consumers is for no condoms. The pornographers have also made it abundantly clear that if anyone does attempt to police the industry, they will go underground and do it anyway, and […]

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