Mandatory Condoms for Porn Films? It's on the Ballot

Should porn actors be forced to wear condoms as a public health measure? It's on the ballot in California but both major political parties oppose it.

At first glance a California ballot initiative might seem like common sense: should porn actors be required to wear condoms. In theory, that would prevent the spread of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. Who could argue with that?

But it will be a close vote, analysts are predicting. At last count, 53% of voters supported the measure.

Proposition 60, Condoms in Pornographic Films Initiative asks voters whether mandatory condom use during filming of sexual acts should be a state statute.

If approved, the measure would make a Los Angeles County law requiring these actors to wear condoms on the set to the entire state.

AIDS activists have launched a $5 million campaign in support of the measure, which would also require film producers to be licensed by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, to contact that agency whenever they make a film, and to cover the costs of performers’ workplace-related medical exams, tests for sexually transmitted infections, and STI vaccinations.

Both the California Democratic Party and California Republican Party oppose the measure on the grounds that it might spur the lucrative, tax-generating porn film industry to leave the state.

In a fiscal note on the ballot, state authorities estimated state spending for enforcement could exceed $1 million and state and local taxes revenues might be reduced by “several million dollars annually.”

Editor's Note: The results are now in: California voters defeated this proposal.

Related Coverage:

CDC Calls for PrEP for Porn Stars