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Mission Critical: Correctional Employee Health and Wellness (2020)

In recent years there has been a notable increase in research on the ways that correctional occupational stressors can erode the health of correctional employees (Ferdik & Smith, 2017). This increase parallels correctional administrators’ and other stakeholders’ heightened concerns regarding relationships between occupational stressors and employees’ health, performance, and work engagement. These concerns were articulated in a 2017 resolution of the American Correctional Association called the ACA Resolution Supporting Correctional Employee Wellness 2017-1. This resolution states that the adverse impact of the job on correctional employees’ wellness is a critical issue that has reached crisis proportions because the occupational risks inherent to the profession increase the health risks for correctional employees. The resolution also posits that the nature of the correctional environment can be a causative factor in the development of high-risk behaviors, such as alcohol abuse. The resolution further adds that traumatic events in the correctional workplace may result in employees succumbing to health conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

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