AB 336 (Ammiano, D, San Francisco) now requires district attorneys to get a court’s permission to use possession of more than one condom as potential evidence that a defendant was engaged in prostitution or loitering with intent to commit prostitution—a process that AHF, a co-sponsor of the bill, believes will ultimately prove too burdensome for D.A.s to pursue.
Sex workers and others may now possess—and use—condoms without fear of possibly incriminating themselves while simply trying to protect themselves against diseases and/or pregnancy.
SACRAMENTO (September 18, 2014) AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the operator of the largest non-government HIV testing and prevention program in California, today praised California Governor Jerry Brown for signing Assembly Bill 336 (Tom Ammiano, D, San Francisco), legislation which now requires district attorneys to get a court’s permission to use possession of more than one condom as potential evidence that a defendant was engaged in prostitution or loitering with intent to commit prostitution.
“By signing AB 336, Governor Brown sets the stage for the de facto removal of a significant and misguided barrier to the widespread use of condoms—one of the most effective prevention tools against HIV, STDs and unwanted pregnancies—by a high-risk, often vulnerable population: prostitutes and sex workers,” Whitney Engeran-Cordova, Senior Director of AHF’s Public Health Division, a co-sponsor of the bill. “We believe that the process of having to seek a court’s permission on a repeated basis will ultimately prove too burdensome for many district attorneys to pursue, and that as a result, sex workers, prostitutes and others may now possess more than one condom without the current—and rational—fear of incriminating themselves while they may simply be trying to protect themselves against HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases and/or pregnancy.”
The bill, which the Governor signed Thursday, was authored by Assembly Member Tom Ammiano (D—San Francisco.