Update: Weinstein Moves for City of LA Health Dept., Calls the County’s PHD “corrupt”

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from www.dailynews.com – Calling the county’s public health department a corrupt, bloated, inefficient bureaucracy, AIDS Healthcare Foundation announced Monday the start of a ballot measure drive to create a separate health department for the city of Los Angeles.

“A lack of professional leadership and accountability in the Los Angeles County Public Health Department has led to rampant cronyism and a repeated refusal to adhere to standing state and federal laws,” said Michael Weinstein, president of AHF.

Weinstein said, for example, that the public health department contracts with a single provider and combines services that he called insufficient in helping the city’s residents should there be a viral outbreak. In addition, AHF has filed a lawsuit against the county.

“This is why we are launching a ballot measure to allow city voters to decide on creating a separate and independent city of Los Angeles Public Health Department,” Weinstein said.

A spokesman for county public health said the department had no comment.

But Weinstein said a city-run public health department would provide a fairer playing field for those organizations who already provide health services.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation operates in 12 states and several countries.

In the last several years, the foundation has worked to promote the use of condoms, including on adult film shoots across Los Angeles. Last year, AHF collected 70,000 petition signatures for a ballot initiative called Measure B, which voters approved, to mandate condom use on all adult film sets in Los Angeles County. City officials passed a similar ordinance on its own, but enforcement remains in limbo.

Weinstein said AHF hopes to gather 70,000 petition signatures, saying he believes voters will want to see a separate city public health department initiative on the June 2014 ballot.

His announcement on Monday was made less than a week after a bill was introduced by Assemblyman Isadore Hall, D-Compton, that would mandate the use of condoms by actors in porn films shot anywhere in California.

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