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It was seven years ago that porn performer Kira Kener sued Vivid for wrongful termination. She reportedly got $250,000 in that suit, but the story is Kener never saw the money and Vivid defaulted.
In her suit Kener claimed that she was fired for complaining about unsanitary work conditions. That Steve Hirsch, who used to espouse condoms is now in the forefront opposing them, makes this tale even more intriguing.
Kener, 32, alleged she was infected with a venereal disease by a sex toy she used during a video shoot, according to her lawsuit filed in January 2006 that asked for millions of dollars from Vivid Entertainment Group of Los Angeles.
From CBS News: According to the lawsuit, Kener tested positive for a venereal disease after shooting a pornographic video in February 2004. The director ordered her to work first with a sex toy, then with an actor, the lawsuit stated.
Kener had concerns about working with the actor, but was told to do so by the director anyway, the lawsuit stated.
Kener came to work crying the next day and refused to work with anyone else until she was tested for venereal diseases, according to the lawsuit.
However, another director stepped in and yelled, “There’s no time or money in the budget for testing. I’ll just call someone else to come in and work with you. I’ll let that person know that you may have come in contact with something, but it’s up to them if they want to work with you,” according to the suit.
Kener later tested positive for the disease, the lawsuit stated.
“Since then, Kener was informed and believes that marital aids are a breeding ground for diseases,” the lawsuit stated.
Kener was fired by Vivid Entertainment on Feb. 26, 2004, the same day she told management she was concerned about having to work with previously used marital aids, the lawsuits stated.
The lawsuit also alleged Vivid Entertainment had not paid all the money it owed her for her video shoots and had used her “Kira Kener” trademark for financial advantage without her permission.
Vivid Entertainment lawyers maintained in their court papers that Kener was an independent contractor and not an employee, and that their agreement with her allowed them to use her name for economic advantage.
Kener, whose former name was Stephanie Knain, was working in strip clubs throughout the United States when she signed an exclusive agreement to perform in adult videos for Vivid Entertainment in 1998, according to her declaration that is part of her lawsuit.
Kira Kener is now her legal name and she lives in North Carolina, steps she said she took to protect her family from exposure to the adult entertainment industry.