SAN DIEGO — The Free Speech Coalition has asked adult entertainment performers and production staff to attend Thursday’s California's Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board meeting in San Diego.
The meeting before the Standards Board comes three months after the panel rejected proposed amendments to Section 5193 of the California Code of Regulations, which would have required adult entertainment performers statewide to use condoms in films.
The Standards Board, meeting in Oakland, Calif., voted 3-2 to accept the new regulations but needed four "yes" votes to pass them.
Eric Paul Leue, who leads the FSC as executive director, told XBIZ that the presence and vocal participation of adult performers and other stakeholders before the Standards Board is critical because of ongoing existential challenges waged by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.
“Since the Feb. 18 hearing, where the Cal/OSHA Standards Board did not approve the proposed regulation against the industry, FSC has made it a point to be present at every hearing to showcase our commitment,” Leue said. “We have continuously invited industry workers, including performers, to join us at these meetings.”
Leue said that the AHF and its “controversial anti-sex leader,” Michael Weinstein, have repeatedly claimed that the workers in the industry cannot speak for themselves.
“The trade association is committed, not only to supporting our workers and businesses, but also to amplifying their voices,” he said. “Feb.18 showed us that when we work together we can achieve great things, and we are far from done.
“With Weinstein's [statewide] ballot initiative promoting and encouraging harassment of industry workers, businesses and ancillary businesses, FSC is all the more energized to fight for the safety and well-being of our industry. United we stand, divided we fall, and stand we will."
But November’s ballot measure, called the "Safer Sex in Adult Film Production Act," isn’t the only threat for the adult filmmaking business.
Just weeks after the Standards Board rejected the AHF’s petition to amend Section 5193, the AHF filed a new version of its petition to change the bloodborne pathogens standards for adult performers in the state.
The Standards Board, by law, must address the AHF’s new proposal by November. Marley Hart, an official with the Standards Board, told XBIZ in March that the panel would consider the proposal at a future business meeting but did not disclose which one.
The AHF’s new request to amend Section 5193, available here, is a near facsimile of its previous one, but it clarifies definitions and adds a new section for adult film production.
Leue said Monday night that the FSC filed a petition with the Standards Board to be heard at the hearing.
"Our petition is based on the industry's decade-long successful and proven self-regulation and is meant to secure that our workers/performers have a seat and table and will be heard," Leue said.
The Standards Board meeting will be held on Thursday at the County Administration Center at 1600 Pacific Hwy. in San Diego.
The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. with a public comment portion that is open to all and will continue with a handful of items on its business agenda.