The Full text and Fact Sheet for AB 640

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AB 640 (Hall) Adult Film Worker Safety
Sponsor: AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Rand Martin, (916) 601-4370
Staff Contact: Brian Duke, (916) 319-2064
The adult film production is a multi-billion dollar industry. California based production of adult films account for the vast majority of this business, employing thousands of Californians and generating millions of dollars in tax revenue.
Workers in agriculture, food service, healthcare, construction and many other industries benefit from stringent work place safety requirements that keep workers’ compensation costs down and ensure a safe environment to earn a living. The adult film industry, given the type of work required, disproportionately exposes actors to a range of health and safety risks. The industry is largely self-regulated and has done an inadequate job of protecting its employees from disease infection.
According to the Los Angeles Department of Public Health (Department), workers in adult films are ten times more likely to be infected with a sexually transmitted disease (STD), such as HIV, than the population at large. Since 2004, the Department has received reports of 2,396 cases of chlamydia, 1,389 cases of gonorrhea, and five syphilis cases among adult film performers. Between 2004 and 2010, 23 actors employed by the adult film industry tested HIV positive with the most recent infection being identified in August of 2013.
The result of this unsafe work environment is a public health crisis that would be preventable if reasonable steps were taken to protect these employees in the workplace.
AB 640 will require condom or other sexual barrier use and frequent STD testing in all adult films produced in California.
This measure, consistent with Los Angeles County’s recent voter approved Measure B (requiring condom use in adult films produced within the county), will provide statewide uniformity needed to ensure that the thousands of actors employed in this multi-billion dollar industry are given reasonable workplace safety protections needed to reduce exposure to HIV and other communicable diseases.
AIDS Healthcare Foundation (Sponsor)
(As amended August 27, 2013)


08/26/13 03:09PM
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Amendment I
In the title, in lines 1 and 2, strike out “employee safety, and declaring the urgency
thereof, to take effect immediately” and insert:
On page 2, before line I, insert:
SECTION 1. Section 6720 is added to the Labor Code, to read:
6720. (a) The Legislature finds and declares that the protection of workers in
the adult film industry is the responsibility of multiple layers of government, with the
department being responsible for worker safety and the county being responsible for
protecting the public health. Therefore, this section shall not be construed to prohibit
a city, county, or city and county from implementing a local ordinance regulating the
adult film industry, provided that nothing in the local ordinance contradicts any
provision of this section.
(b) For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:
( 1) “Adult film” means any commercial film, video, multimedia, or other recorded
representation during the production of which performers aerually engage in sexual
intercourse, including oral, vaginal, or anal penetration.
(2) “Employee” means a person who is an employee or independent contractor,
regardless of whether the person is shown in the adult film, who, during the production
of the adult film, performs sexual intercourse, including oral, vaginal, or anal
(3) ”Employer” means a company, partnership, corporation, or individual engaged
in the production of an adult film. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that the
name on the material for commercial distribution is the employer unless there is
evidence to the contrary as demonstrated through contractual or employment records.
(4) “Sexually transmitted disease” or “STD” means any infection commonly
spread by sexual conduct, including, but not limited to, HIV/ AIDS, gonorrhea, syphilis,
chlamydia, hepatitis, genital human papillomavirus infection, and genital herpes.
(c) An employer shall maintain engineering and work practice controls sufficient
to protect employees from exposure to blood and any potentially infectious materials,
in accordance with Section 5193 ofTitle 8 of the California Code of Regulations.
Engineering and work practice controls shall include, but are not limited to, the
(I) Simulation of sex acts using acting, production, and postproduction
(2) Provision of and required use of condoms and other protective barriers
whenever acts of vaginal or anal intercourse arc filmed.
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(3) The provision of condom-safe water-based or silicone-based lubricants to
facilitate the use of condoms.
( 4) Plastic and other disposable materials to clean up sets.
(5) Sharps containers for disposal of contaminated sharps, including, but not
limited to, any blades, wires, or broken glass.
(d) An employer shall maintain an exposure control plan in accordance with
Section 5193 of Title 8 oftbe California Code of Regulations. An employer shall not
be required to comply with any provision related to establishing and maintaining a
sharps injury log, or any provision regarding regulated waste.
(e) An employer shall make available the hepatitis B vaccination and all medical
followup required by Section 5193 of Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations,
for any employee engaged in the production of adult films, at the employer’s expense.
(f) An employer shall designate a custodian of records for purposes of this section.
A copy of the original production shall be retained by the custodian of records.
(g) An employer shall pay the costs of required medical monitoring, such as
STD testing, and keep confidential employee records.
(h) (1) An employer shall adopt, implement, maintain, and update, as required,
a written health and safety program that meets the requirements of the Injury and Illness
Prevention Program and the bloodbome pathogens standard, described, respectively,
in Sections 3203 and 5193 of Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations.
(2) An employer shall provide a training program in accordance with Section
5193 ofTitle 8 of the California Code of Regulations. The training requirements of
this subdivision may be satisfied by proof that the employee has received appropriate
training at another workplace or from an appropriate third party approved by the
department in the prior 12 months.
(i) This section shall not be construed to require condoms, barriers, or other
personal protective equipment to be visible in the final product of an adult film.
(j) The Legislature finds and declares that screening for STDs is a critical public
health measure and should be employed wherever possible, including the adult film
industry. Therefore, this section shall not be construed to impede or replace STD
screening of all employees, as defined in paragraph (2) of subdivision (b), pursuant to
STD screening protocols established by the federal Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, the State Department of Public Health, and the public health department
in the county where the filming occurs.
SEC. 2. The provisions of this act are severable. If any provision of this act or
its application is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or
applications that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.
SEC. 3 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article
XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by
a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime
or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or
infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes
the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B oftbe
California Constitution.
On page 2, strike out lines I to 26, inclusive
-0 –
08/26113 03:09PM
RN 13 24944 PAGE 3

81850cookie-checkThe Full text and Fact Sheet for AB 640

The Full text and Fact Sheet for AB 640

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12 Responses

  1. Just a first impression of it.

    The language in AB332 that I harped on a few months ago–defining “adult film” as necessarily a film made “for the sexual stimulation of the viewer”–has been smartly removed from this bill. That eliminates a HUGE constitutional defect that was present in the earlier bill.

    It also means that now, ANY moving picture where actual intercourse is recorded–no matter whether it’s a porn movie, or a sex education video, or a documentary, or an art film–falls under the definition of “adult movie” and must comply with the statute.

    This now means that artists, documentary filmmakers that deal with sexually explicit topics, and sex-ed companies might well join any constitutional battles against the legislation–which I think can only help those opposing this legislation.

    And there is no way the legislature could get away with just carving out an exemption for those kinds of works, either–that, too, would require a blatantly content-based targeting of a specific message or viewpoint, which no court would uphold.

    It also means that softcore movies, fetish videos with no penetration, or any movie (whether mainstream or not) with lots of sweat or saliva passing back and forth, are left completely untouched by this law, no matter how dangerous those horrible contaminating human substances are.

    I think the lawmakers are realizing that the only way to properly narrow the scope of the law so as not to piss off huge swaths of California’s business community is to focus on one thing and one thing only: penetration.

  2. @Alex: doubt sweat and saliva would be targeted, since there has never been a documented case of HIV, Hep C, or Syphilis being transmitted through sweat or saliva. Nothing transmitted via sweat, and as for saliva, Herpes, HPV, Chlamydia, and Gonorrhea risk (via oral sex), but not the Big Three.

  3. I hear a “YES” vote from the floor.
    YES protect the lives and health of the California Porn Worker
    and next make it a FEDERAL law in the united states after Nationwide
    coverage all over the FUCKING media of the latest cases.

    If the guys can’t wear a condom. Send em’ packin and if the girls
    got excuses from rashes to other STUPID Producer ass kissing
    excuses… got to fucking go. You’re dangerous!

  4. @sachertorte Of course you’re right, the only thing is that it’s actually quite common for people to have a sore on the inside of their mouth that might release other substances besides saliva, or even bleeding gums, etc. I dare say that no one on any mainstream movie set ever inspects the insides of the mouths of the actors before shooting a kissing scene to ensure that no one has any small or unseen lesions or gum issues, etc.

    I’m not saying that the law *should* include those substances–but generally speaking all sorts of diseases *can* be transmitted via them, and if we’re seriously concerned about the safety of performers in all genres of entertainment, and not just targeting porn specifically, then there *might* be something of an inconsistency there.

    But mostly I’m just interested in the contours of the law, what it sweeps up, what it ignores.

  5. @Alex: sweat is NOT an STD conduit at ALL- as for bleeding gums, etc., well, I would sure as hell hope no one would be shooting with bleeding gums (that’s attractive)- as for possible bleeding gums/oral lesions, maybe they SHOULD be doing a little mouth-check on adult performers before shooting. Might at least keep oral herpes from becoming genital herpes. As for HIV and bleeding gums or mouth sores, HIV is actually not easy to transmit. Dirty needles and rough, unprotected receptive anal sex are the two most common proven vectors, with receptive vaginal sex well behind the first two. And the penetrative partners have about 10% of the risk that the receptive partners do. Which brings back the issue of WTF was Jennifer White thinking when she agreed to do the internal cumshot anal gangbang with men who were in the vast majority chosen through a cattle-call audition……supposedly she had medical bills, but REALLY?! Work out a damn payment plan or just let it go on your credit history!

  6. Public Disgrace lets people just come in there and participate in those humiliation scenes. Do i enjoy that hardcore shit? Sure do. But at the same time, how easy is it for one of the extras to cut his/her finger. They have HIV, and they finger the girl rapidly. Look at the videos. It happens pretty often in those videos.

    I think is finished. I doubt they will be able to continue to shoot B/G without condoms, or they may change up their whole scene and maybe tone it down a bit? Who knows.

    All I know is porn is starting to really really really sink into the bottom of the barrel. What happened to the the good old days of “Where the Boys Aren’t”???

  7. Interesting law,interesting wording, but perhaps some issues that can be argued that could cause issues. I think that the act doesn’t particularly address the ideas of independent workers who do contractual work, and instead places heavy burdens on employers that makes little sense.

    As an example, why would an employer be responsible for a Hep B vaccinations? Shouldn’t the employee be responsible for it? Should that not be required to show it in order to work? Remember, that same employee may work for dozens of different people. Which one has to pay for the medical work (and then accept the legal responsibility to prove that it was done to everyone else)? As for safety training, is that going to have to be done before every shoot? Will there be an hour long class and perhaps a quiz before people are allowed to fuck? Will this be done once, or done over and over? The way the law reads, it makes it sound like each of these things will have to be done by each employer on each shoot to protect themselves from liability. After all, you know that someone will be turning out fake “did the course” documents with some agencies name on it.

    Section I is also self-defeating, as it gives the agency no way to look a the final product to show that the safety protocol was followed, which means ONLY an on set inspection could determine if this is going to be applied or not.

    I doubt that the (nearly broke) state of California is going to suddenly unleash dozens of inspectors to go out and check every location shoot, every time. It becomes a statute that creates the need not for compliance, but for a series of blinds, dead end shelf companies, and certificate mills to get around. It accomplishes little, except perhaps to create another way for dishonest people to skim a little more off the top.

  8. @ Alex; They need to do “genital exams” too. who wants to go down on someone and find out that that “PORNSTAR” has a outbreaks of herpes, warts, and other obivous signs of trouble. Most of the Idiots today don’t do that. Its all about the Money….

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