State Investigate's Larry Flynt's Porn Productions After Complaint About Lack Of Condom Use
Larry Flynt's eponymous porn empire was under investigation by the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) following a complaint by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation decrying the lack of condom use in Larry Flynt Production's adult videos, the AHF announced late Thursday.
In a statement the AHF called the state inquiry a "formal investigation" that started Tuesday when Cal/OSHA officials paid a visit to the Beverly Hills headquarters of Flynt's company.
The probe follows AHF's complaint that "Flynt's films demonstrate unsafe -- potentially life-threatening -- behavior in a California workplace, as the sexual acts filmed without participating performers using condoms depict the unprotected exchange of bodily fluids," according to an AHF statement.
The organization held a press conference outside Flynt's headquarters last month to bring attention to its allegations. AHF has maintained that the state has the option of enforcing existing law prohibiting the transmission of dangerous diseases in the workplace.
A protest outside Larry Flynt Publications last month.
Larry Flynt Productions president Michael Klein stated that day," ... We won't budge when it comes to condomless productions.That's what the consumer wants and we deliver it. LFP follows every safety procedure, including testing during specific time frames, and we haven't had one incident of infection."
Cal/OSHA has been considering requiring condoms in porn as a result of AHF's pressure. It has taken up investigations of about 16 Los Angeles-based porn makers that AHF has pointed out.
As part of its complaint against LFP, the organization made 100 Flynt-produced, condom-free DVDs available to Cal/OSHA to allege that unsafe workplace situations exist on-set.
"Larry Flynt is quite outspoken in his strenuous opposition to condom use in his adult film productions," said Michael Weinstein, president AHF. "That is why we filed additional workplace health and safety complaints with Cal/OSHA in August: to press for the enforcement of state workplace regulatory guidelines which would require the use of condoms in his -- and all -- adult films produced in California."
AHF could have a point: The potential transmission of diseases wouldn't (and for the most part isn't) tolerated in other workplace situations (although mixed martial arts, where blood is sometimes spewed, would make for some interesting comparisons).
On the other hand, few in the state legislature have been eager to stand up for mandatory condoms. The porn industry is believed to bring in billions to California's economy. And porn health advocates argue that if condom use were mandated, adult video would simply go underground, making things even less safe than they are now.