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Project HOPE Helped Break the Cycle of Prostitution and Solicitation, But Had Implementation Problems, Report No. 04-50, August 2004
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  • Project HOPE pilot projects were funded in Hillsborough and Pinellas counties for two years.  The program aimed to break the cycle of prostitution by treating both prostitutes and their clients, referred to as “johns.”  The Governor vetoed program funding for Fiscal Year 2004-05. 
  • The johns’ programs at the two pilot sites used the same model, though the Hillsborough pilot served four times as many clients as the Pinellas pilot.  As of January 2004, no john who completed Project HOPE had been re-arrested for solicitation. 
  • The programs for prostitutes used different models at the two sites: Hillsborough focused on service delivery while Pinellas focused on service referrals.  In Hillsborough, most prostitutes had not completed the program at the time of our review; of the few who had, none had been re-arrested.  The Pinellas pilot did not track whether prostitutes completed the program, so its success could not be determined or compared to the Hillsborough pilot.  As contract administrator, the Department of Corrections should have ensured that the pilots collected and reported comparable data. 
  • Several lessons can be learned from Project HOPE.  Contract administrators should clearly define and enforce contract requirements; avoid duplicative layers of administration; use statewide recidivism data to measure program performance; and routinely educate and coordinate with key stakeholders.  

    Copies of this report in print or alternate accessible format may be obtained by telephone (850/488-0021), by FAX (850/487-9213), in person, or by mail (OPPAGA Report Production, Claude Pepper Building, Room 312, 111 W. Madison St., Tallahassee, FL 32399-1475).
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