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AIDS Healthcare Foundation Files Complaint With OSHA Against Vivid Over Condom Use

LOS ANGELES (CBS) —  The AIDS Healthcare Foundation filed a complaint Thursday with the state's Occupational Safety and Health agency against adult-film production house Vivid Entertainment for not requiring performers to wear condoms.

AHF has been a longtime proponent of mandating condoms in adult-film production.

They filed complaints against 16 film companies in 2009 and pressured the county Department of Public Health to halt film shoots that do not require condom use.

"As a global HIV and STD medical provider operating treatment clinics and prevention facilities here in California, we see it as our duty to pursue action on the issue of safety in the workplace -- in these instances, unprotected sex acts taking place in albeit non-traditional workplaces -- porn sets located throughout the San Fernando Valley that are churning out billions of dollars of adult fare every day," AHF President Michael Weinstein said.

Weinstein said the group opted to file another complaint against Vivid largely because the company's founder and co-chairman, Steven Hirsch, has been loudly vocal in his opposition to the use of condoms in adult films.

Hirsch said he respected "AHF's right to freedom of speech. We do not, however, agree with their point of view."

He said the company was satisfied with the work being done by the Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation, the industry-sponsored health clinic.

He also said the company was working with the state on the issue of workplace safety.

"Our attorney is part of a committee that is working with Cal/OSHA to come up with a reasonable and responsible solution," Hirsch said. "When that work is complete, we will act appropriately."

As part of the complaint, AHF submitted 20 DVDs produced by Vivid -- noting that four of them include commercials for Vivid-brand condoms.

In December 2010, 24-year-old XXX actor Derrick Burts (who performed in straight films as Cameron Reid and in gay videos as Derek Chambers) came forward to say he tested positive for HIV and that he contracted the virus while working on a porn set.

Burts said he wanted to see condom use "mandatory" in the adult video business.

The Medical Health Care Foundation said Burts contracted the virus through personal activity and that he infected no other performers.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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