Men caught offering women money for sex will soon be going to school after they leave jail, the Charlotte Observer reports. Beginning in August, men charged with soliciting for prostitution will likely be required to take a class where they’ll learn about sexually transmitted diseases, addiction, and respect for women. The idea is that it might be easier to change the men who pay for sex than the women who sell it. “If we can convince these men they can’t cruise around Charlotte looking for prostitutes, that could diminish the number of prostitutes working the streets,” said prosecutor Bruce Lillie. “If we take away that demand, the supply will dry up.”
Men facing their first prostitution-related charge can get their case dismissed if they successfully complete the “john school,” Lillie said. Judges can sentence others as part of their probation to attend the school. Now, men with no record who plead guilty to soliciting usually get a suspended sentence and a fine. The classes would run two hours weekly for five weeks and cost $220. Cities including Norfolk, Va., Las Vegas and Nashville, Tn. — have john schools but Charlotte’s will be different. In other programs scorned wives and former prostitutes are brought in to shame the men. Charlotte’s school will be more therapeutic than punitive. In New York City, more than 1,200 men attended a john school in the last three years and just two were rearrested, the Daily News reported.