Brooklyn, New York, “Project Respect,” a John School, was initiated
ten years ago by Brooklyn District Attorney Charles J. Hynes due to
the increasing number of teenagers engaged in prostitution.159 John
School is also offered in at least six major cities, including San
Francisco, Washington D.C., and Buffalo.160 The John School classes
aim to eliminate demand by building empathy among the buyers and
educating them about the violence and abuse that is experienced by
the youth working in the commercial sex industry.161 The classes
offered at John School are for first-time offenders and are federally
subsidized.162 Each class participant pays a $350 fee and listens to
speeches from law enforcement officials, prosecutors, ex-prostitutes,
and advocates.163 Also, the class attendees learn about the prevalence
of young children involved in the industry.164 After the buyer attends
the class, the arrest is dropped from his record if he is not re-arrested
for solicitation of a prostitute within a certain time period.165
If a buyer decides not to participate in John School, he is
criminally prosecuted for a Class B misdemeanor that holds a
possible ninety-day prison sentence.166 The recidivism rate for the
John School in Brooklyn, New York has proven to be extremely low.
“Out of 3,079 johns who have taken the class, only . . . [twenty-six]
— fewer than [one] percent” have been subsequently arrested for the
same crime.167 The success of Project Respect has led other cities,
159 Kristin Pisarcik, Inside a Brooklyn “John School”, ABC NEWS (Mar. 20, 2007),
Saul, Brooklyn’s ‘John School’ Teaches Men Dangers of Hookers, N. Y. POST, May
160 See Pisarcik, supra note 159.
161 See HINES & HOCHMAN, supra note 129, at 19.
162 See Pisarcik, supra note 159.
163 See Saul, supra note 159; see also Pisarcik, supra note 159 (listing the speakers
who lecture to buyers in the John School classes).
165 See Saul, supra note 159.
166 Pisarcik, supra note 159.
167 See Saul, supra note 159.