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Operational/Organizational Stress and Burnout in County Correctional Officers: An Exploratory Study

29 June 2018


Within the work environment of corrections facilities, correctional officers monitor, supervise, and manage inmates (Finney, Stergiopoulos, Hensel, Bonato, & Dewa, 2013; Lambert, Hogan, Griffin, & Kelley, 2015). Due to corrections work being such a high-stress career field, correctional officers may be more likely than individuals in other careers to experience burnout and the corresponding consequences. To examine the gap regarding whether county-level correctional officers experience burnout and if their stressors may be different from the stressors at the federal or state level, perceptions of stress and burnout in a sample of correctional officers from county correctional facilities in Oregon were evaluated. In an online survey, participants completed the Maslach Burnout Inventory, Police Stress Questionnaire – Operational, Police Stress Questionnaire – Organizational, and a demographic questionnaire. Results confirmed that county correctional officers do, in fact, experience burnout. However, the results also demonstrated that the measured operational and organizational stress of police work might not have adequately captured the unique perceptions of this sample of correctional officers.


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