The author of the stripper age requirement bill says he plans to present a similar version in the upcoming legislative session. The law was recently blocked by a federal judge in New Orleans for being unconstitutional as written. Sulphur Senator Ronnie Johns says Judge Carl Barbier’s ruling was clear about what language made the law unenforceable.
“We’re going to take a little different approach to the issue, but I’m not going to let it go away. I’m not going to just walk away from the issue. I think it’s way too important,” Johns said.
Johns says he plans to alter the language in the bill so that it’s legal, but keep the intent of requiring strippers to be at least 21-years-old. He’s confident they can find a legal way to accomplish this because other laws impose age restrictions.
“Being able to purchase alcohol, we do that at age 21. Allowing people to go into our gaming facilities in the state, we do that at age 21,” Johns said.
The bill was originally presented as a means of curbing human trafficking in the state. Johns says many victims who are brought into Louisiana end up working in strip clubs. He says anyone who think this type of modern day slavery doesn’t happen in our state is sadly mistaken.
“It’s not only happening, but it’s growing. We’re going to keep fighting that fight, and I’m going to continue on this avenue. I just think it’s the right thing to do,” Johns said.