Job Satisfaction Behind Walls and Fences – A Study of Prison Health Care Staff

Source: Brett E. Garland, William P. McCarty, Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 20, No. 2, June 2009
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From the abstract:
Health care staff serve important humanitarian, legal, and security functions inside prisons. Although medical and health staff have become critical to daily life in prisons, little is known about their work attitudes and outcomes. This article examines the job satisfaction of 430 health care practitioners in the federal prison system. Ordinary least squares regression is used to analyze responses to a global measurement of job satisfaction. This analytic procedure was chosen after tests determined that prison-level characteristics would have very little influence on the job satisfaction of this sample. Work-related variables were stronger predictors of job satisfaction than personal characteristics. Feeling effective in dealing with inmates had the strongest impact on job satisfaction. Health care staff also had higher job satisfaction when they perceived greater flexibility and effectiveness in organizational operations and when they had more positive feelings about supervision. Significant personal characteristics that influenced job satisfaction included race and education level.

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