Cincinnati City Council to debate McMicken Street prostitution barrier program

CINCINNATI -- The barriers on McMicken Street just recently came down in Over-the-Rhine and the Cincinnati City Council is slated to debate whether the anti-prostitution measure worked.

A debate on the program was scheduled for Monday but it was canceled.

The controversial barriers have previously been credited with cutting down on crime but some in the community met them with protest.

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One family even filed a lawsuit over the barriers. Residents in the area felt inconvenienced, and some decided their hassle outweighed the barriers' benefits.

The roadblocks were set up three months ago after other measures aimed at combatting prostitution failed. The idea was to keep johns from driving up and down the street looking for prostitutes.

In addition to the street barriers, councilmembers have discussed measures including:

  • Notifying spouses as one way to crack down on prostitution.
  • Posting the names of convicted johns in local newspapers.
  • Notifying a spouse of a positive venereal disease test following a prostitution arrest.
  • Establishing a  "john school" program as a condition of a suspended sentence.
  • Raising fines in certain areas where prostitutes are often found.
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