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Date Title Type
Document 030026
Improving Correctional Officer Wellness Through a Multifaceted Approach
U.S. Dept. of Justice. Office of Justice Programs (OJP) Diagnostic Center (Washington, DC).
"Seven staff fatalities including three suicides in just three years (2010-2012). For professionals who operate correction facilities, stress can be a significant issue with fatal consequences. The Middlesex Sheriff’s Office (MSO) had 45 staff fatalities over the past 30 years. Twenty-four percent of these deaths were suicide. MSO believes the other deaths are tied to stress and wellness related health issues such as heart attack, stroke, diabetes and high blood pressure. MSO Sheriff Peter Kouto... Read More

4 pages
Document 029910
New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness: NIC's Second Virtual Conference
By Peters, Colette; Denhof, Michael; Morton, Gregory; Spinaris, Caterina; Lewis, Kirsten; McGrath, Roy; Violanti, John; Jones, Susan; Leitch, Laurie; Jacobs, Ann; Clarke, Harold. National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC).
On June 10, 2015, the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) launched a national virtual conference on staff wellness titled “New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness.” Session topics will include using neuroscience to reduce stress, “healing corrections,” the organizational implications of boundary violations, creating a purpose-driven corrections career, corrections personnel suicide, and staff wellness. The objective of “New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness” is to: Educate c... Read More

Document 030144
Stop Stressing Out
By Johnson, John W.; Hughes, Ralph. American Jail Association (AJA) (Hagerstown, MD).
All correctional staff and administrators should read this article. It describes strategies for dealing with correctional officer stress. This article covers: caring for oneself; personal wellness program; physical fitness; diet; mental wellness; rest and renewal; four dimensions of renewal proposed by Dr. Steven Covey; Sabbath—a day of rest; and a call to action. "As correctional officers learn to care for themselves, they also learn to care better for those housed in their facilities. It is no... Read More

6 pages
Document 029833
Resources for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Professionals
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS) (Rockville, MD). National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) (Los Angeles, CA).
"Children who come to the attention of the juvenile justice system are a challenging and underserved population. The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has developed resources to help juvenile justice professionals understand and provide trauma-focused services to these youth." This website has a wealth of information about trauma-informed juvenile justice. Access is provided to the "Current Issues and New Directions in Creating Trauma-Informed Juvenile Justice Systems, Brief Series": Traum... Read More

Document 031363
Hazmat Suit for the Soul, Parts 1-3
By Spinaris, Caterina. corrections.com (Scituate, MA).
This three part series addresses the issue of corrections fatigue and how corrections staff can deal with it by developing "hazmat suits for their souls". A hazmat suit for the soul allows you to respond to the "hazardous materials" of daily stress and dangerous incidents during work and to "decontaminate" emotionally afterwards. Part One explains "complex trauma", how it can result in psychological symptoms, diagnostic psychiatric disorders like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), adverse wo... Read More

Document 031375
Stress and Corrections: Addressing the Safety and Well-Being of Correctional Officers
By Elliot, Diane; Kuehl, Kerry; Cherniack, Martin.
"Pubmed is an Internet search engine used to access millions of articles in biomedical and life science literature … only 23 articles are identified when searching “correctional officers (COs) and health.” This article is a snapshot of ongoing work and a growing national consortium of individuals interested in advancing the well-being of Cos" (p. 1). Sections cover : hazards of corrections work; stress is hazardous to your heart; ways to improve well-being; first National Symposium on Correction... Read More

4 pages
Document 027907
The Corrections Profession: Maintaining Safety and Sanity, Part 1
By Spinaris, Caterina; Denhof, Mike; Morton, Greg. Desert Waters Correctional Outreach (DWCO) (Florence, CO); National Institute of Corrections Academy (Aurora, CO).
This program is the first of a two-part webinar, and covers the physical and emotional challenges faced by correctional personnel. “The dangers correctional staff encounter on the job are well known to their leaders. A lesser known but possibly more hazardous set of factors involves the cumulative negative side effects of what staff experience through daily interactions with justice-involved individuals and immersion in uniquely challenging workplace conditions. Such side effects can be understo... Read More
85 minutes + 54 pages
Document 027908
The Corrections Profession: Maintaining Safety and Sanity, Part 2
By Spinaris, Caterina; Denhof, Mike; Morton, Greg. National Institute of Corrections Academy (Aurora, CO); Desert Waters Correctional Outreach (DWCO) (Florence, CO).
This program is the second of a two-part webinar, and covers the physical and emotional challenges faced by correctional personnel. “The dangers correctional staff encounter on the job are well known to their leaders. A lesser known but possibly more hazardous set of factors involves the cumulative negative side effects of what staff experience through daily interactions with justice-involved individuals and immersion in uniquely challenging workplace conditions. Such side effects can be underst... Read More
78 minutes + 42 pages
Document 028268
Stress and Turnover in Parole and Probation-APPA
By Matz, Adam; Lewis, Kristen. DC Public Safety (Washington, DC) .
Adam Matz and Kristen Lewis were interviewed about stress and turnover in the probation and parole agencies. The show reviewed two articles written by Matz and Lewis.... Read More
30 minutes
Document 028299
Occupational Stressors in Corrections Organizations: Types, Effects and Solutions
By Denhof, Michael D.; Morton, Gregory R.; Spinaris, Caterina G.. National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC).
"The primary goal of corrections work is the safe and secure management and rehabilitation of justice-involved individuals, whether in locked facilities or within community supervision programs. Pursuit of this goal comes with demanding requirements such as the necessity of staff to maintain constant heightened vigilance while they work and also adhere to strict security protocols. In addition, corrections staff must perform their duties within harsh physical environments and with repeated expos... Read More
21 pages
Document 027497
Depression, PTSD, and Comorbidity in United States Corrections Professionals: Prevalence and Impact on Health and Functioning
By Denhof, Michael D.; Spinaris, Caterina G.. Desert Waters Correctional Outreach (Florence, CO).
“The purpose of this study was to estimate prevalence rates for depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and comorbid PTSD/depression in corrections professionals, and to explore the relationship between particular disorder conditions and a variety of variables including job type and numerous indices of health, well-being, and life functioning (e.g., number of doctor visits, number of absences from work, extent of substance use, satisfaction with life, job functioning, and other variab... Read More
58 pages
Document 029677
Secondary Trauma: The Personal Impact of Working with Criminal Offenders
By Lewis, Kirsten. American Probation and Parole Association (APPA) (Lexington, KY).
This is a great article explaining how and why community corrections officers experience traumatic stress on the job and related efforts to address this problem. Sections cover: stress—it comes with the job; number of primary traumatic incidents for officers—28% experience four or more incidents; secondary (indirect ) traumatic stress (STS) or compassion fatigue--symptoms and number experienced—44% of 3-4 symptoms; vicarious traumatization (VT) due to empathetic encounters with victimized indiv... Read More

14 pages
Document 028104
Correctional Officer Wellness and Safety Literature Review
By Brower, Jaime. U.S. Dept. of Justice (DOJ). Office of Justice Programs (OJP) Diagnostic Center (Washington, DC).
"Health and wellness among those who work in correctional agencies is an issue that has always existed, but is just starting to get the increasing attention that it deserves. One of the greatest threats to correctional officer (CO) wellness involves the stress they encounter as a result of their occupation. This document reviews the body of literature on the causes and effects of stress for COs, and describes the available research on CO wellness programs and their effectiveness" (p. 1). Sectio... Read More
26 pages
Document 025430
Florida Mortality Study: Florida Law Enforcement and Corrections Officers compared to Florida General Population
Florida State Lodge (Tallahassee, FL).
This study was conducted to determine if there is a difference in lifespan between law enforcement and correctional officers and the general public. Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; research parameters; Florida general population; Florida Division of Retirement (FRS) Special Risk Class (Law Enforcement and Corrections); population comparison; and conclusion. On average, law enforcement and correctional officers died 12 years earlier than the general population. In o... Read More
13 pages
Document 024726
Hitting the Wall: Dealing with Stress in Corrections [Lesson Plan and Participant's Manual]
National Institute of Corrections Academy. Regional Training Initiative. Central Region (N.P.).
Issues surrounding stress in a correctional setting, like the effects, sources, and symptoms of stress, burnout, and coping strategies, are covered during this 6.5 hour course. Participants will be able to: define stress and identify the effects of stress; identify the sources of stress; identify the physical and behavioral symptoms of stress; define burnout and identify the stages of burnout; identify positive and negative coping strategies; summarize the key components of “My Pyramid”; recogni... Read More
Document 019659
Correctional Staff Wellness: Making Choices Toward a Higher Level of Total Health and Well Being
  • [Videoconference Held June 16, 2004]
  • National Institute of Corrections Academy (Longmont, CO).
    This program focuses on the importance of staff wellness in a correctional environment. Topics discussed include:
    • Mental and physical health;
    • Substance abuse;
    • How to recognize and manage stress in the workplace;
    • Stress-related symptoms;
    • And staff support resources.... Read More
    1 DVD (180 min.)
    Document 017023
    Large Jail Network Meeting, January 10-12, 1999, Longmont, Colorado; Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting
    National Institute of Corrections. Jails Division (Longmont, CO).
    The issues of post-traumatic stress and critical incidents are addressed. Contents of this document include: meeting highlights; post-traumatic stress syndrome and critical incidents -- preparation, response, and review; post-traumatic stress -- the value of peer support; programs that address post-traumatic stress syndrome in employees; standardized emergency management and critical incident command systems; critical incident training -- preparation, response, and review; critical incident res... Read More
    41 p.
    Document 003016
    Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting, January 1996
    National Institute of Corrections Jails Division (Longmont, CO).
    Focusing on issues surrounding deaths in the jail setting, this meeting presented seven seminars, titled: 1. The Dilemma of jail deaths; 2. Overview of dynamics of jail population; 3. Preventing in-custody deaths; 4. Resources available for dying inmates; 5. Community and media relations in the context of in-custody deaths; 6. Coping with staff deaths; and 7. The crime bill and its effect on corrections.... Read More
    44 p.
    Document 003659
    Administrative Sources of Occupational Stress in a Correctional Setting: Administrative Manual
    By Ratner, Alan M.. National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC); California Dept. of Corrections (Sacramento, CA). Aide Behavioral Services (Sacramento, CA).
    ... Read More
    50 p.
    Document 004028
    Stress in Corrections Officers
    By O'Brien, Barbara S.; Gustafson, David. National Institute of Corrections, Prisons Division (Washington, DC). Iowa Dept. of Corrections (Des Moines, IA).
    Cover title.... Read More
    Document 000582
    Stress: Making The Most of It - A Supervisor's Guide
    By Bushnell, Jon L.. National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC). Evaluation/Policy Research Associates, Ltd. (N.P.).
    This is a companion piece to a report entitled, "Stress: Making the Most of It - A Personalized Guide For Correctional Staff Describing How Stress Can Be Managed Effectively".... Read More
    86 p.
    Document 000575
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