SAN FRANCISCO—With the California Senate's Labor & Industrial Relations Committee set to hear AB 1576, the mandatory "barrier protections" in porn bill, on June 25, adult industry members have begun a petition campaign whose objective is let the five senators on that committee know that the industry is concerned about the bill's effects, not only on performers and producers, but on the entire state.
The petition page can be found here, and in addition to allowing anyone concerned about AB 1576 to send a personalized letter fax to one or more of the five committee members—Ben Huesco (District 40), Mark Wyland (District 38), Mark Leno (District 11), Holly Mitchell (District 26) and Alex Padilla (District 20)—the page contains a video created by industry members and supporters on why AB 1576 is such a poor piece of legislation, as well as tips on how to write an effective letter, and a review of the industry's major objections to the bill's content.
Among the topics that can be addressed in the letter fax:
• The adult film industry has effective protocols in place to protect performers.
• AB 1576 will drive the adult film industry out of California, eliminating tens of thousands of jobs and costing the state $5 billion to $6 billion in revenue.
• AB 1576 is based on distorted information.
• AB 1576 imposes a government mandate on HIV testing.
• AB 1576 will waste valuable resources—HIV funding in CA has already been significantly reduced.
• AB 1576 interferes with a pending lawsuit.
• AB 1576 compromises performer privacy and increases liability.
Each of the bullet points is explained on the site, including the fact that five new HIV cases are reported daily in Los Angeles County, but there's been no on-set transmission of HIV since 2004; that the L.A. County Department of Health has been unable to link any of the adult performers who became HIV-positive in 2013 to any on-set transmission; and that performers' medical privacy rights are endangered by AB 1576's mandatory testing requirements, the results of which may be seen by workers at several government agencies.
The petition page also makes the excellent point that L.A. County's Measure B, which closely resembles AB 1576, is currently the subject of a court challenge to the extent that it is already in front of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and if that court invalidates or largely changes Measure B (as is likely), the passage of AB 1576 at this time could find the law invalid even before it could be put into effect.
The site also provides access to two petitions on Change.org: One to ask that AB 1576 be rejected by the legislature, and one which reads, "Sign the petition to ask Michael Weinstein to resign from his post as CEO and President of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) for his recent comments about the Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) medication, Truvada, and those who use it."
The site urges all who want to keep the adult industry free from useless regulation and to keep it here in California to fax their senators and stop AB 1576.