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Porn industry lifts moratorium imposed after latest HIV case

December 13, 2013|By Abby Sewell
  • AIDS Healthcare Foundation supporters, shown in 2011, lobbied for the mandated use of condoms in porn film production.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation supporters, shown in 2011, lobbied for the… (Francine Orr / Los Angeles…)

An adult industry trade group said Friday that producers can resume filming after a week-long moratorium prompted by a performer's positive HIV test.

It was the third time in the last year that the industry has shut down after it was discovered that a performer had HIV. 

Free Speech Coalition, the industry lobbying group, which oversees the STD testing system for performers, has said that all the HIV cases were acquired off-set.

"Adult performers -- like all of us -- have personal lives," coalition Chief Executive Diane Duke said in a statement on the group's website. "We cannot control, and should not look to control, people's private lives. What we can do is make sure that HIV is stopped at the gate by testing protocols."

The moratorium was lifted after the affected performer's partners tested negative for the virus. The coalition said the performer's last "at-risk interaction" with another performer was Nov. 21.

The industry recently increased the frequency of required STD testing for performers from once a month to every 14 days. That has not silenced critics, who say the only reliable way to prevent transmission of HIV and other STDs on set is by mandating condom use.

The Los Angeles-based nonprofit AIDS Healthcare Foundation bankrolled a successful ballot measure to require use of condoms in adult films made in Los Angeles County, although the measure is now tied up in court and not being actively enforced.

Foundation President Michael Weinstein blamed lax regulation for the most recent HIV case.

“The lion's share of the responsibility of what’s going on now lies with government agencies, who aren’t enforcing the law,” he said. 

The porn industry briefly shut down this summer after actress Cameron Bay tested HIV-positive. Soon after, Bay's then real-life boyfriend, Rod Daily, announced on Twitter that he also was HIV-positive.

His announcement did not trigger a separate moratorium because it was not reported officially.

The second shutdown occurred in September, when an industry-affiliated doctor contacted the coalition with the results of a third HIV-positive performer. That performer did not come forward publicly, nor has the most recent performer. The case was discovered at a testing center in Los Angeles.

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Twitter: @sewella

abby.sewell@latimes.com

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