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NCJ Number: 99171 Find in a Library
Title: Officer and a Lady - Organizational Barriers to Women Working as Correctional Officers in Men's Prisons
Journal: Social Problems  Volume:32  Issue:4  Dated:(April 1985)  Pages:375-388
Author(s): N C Jurik
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 14
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Interviews, questionnaires, and historical data from a State department of corrections in the western United States formed the basis of an examination of the organizational barriers confronting women employed as correctional officers in men's prisons.
Abstract: The main study data came from open-ended interviews with 22 female and 10 male correctional officers, 4 administrators, 6 supervisors, and 6 training coordinators. Purposive sampling methods generated the sample. Although correctional officers as a group faced many common problems, female officers faced additional barriers not confronting their male counterparts. Although biased attitudes of male staff and supervisors appeared to represent the greatest barrier, further analysis revealed barriers resulting from the institution's organizational structure. The token position of women in corrections, the conflicting nature of the work, conditions external to the organization, informal organizational resistance, and the lack of adequate administrative implementation strategies also posed important barriers to the full integration of female officers. The organizational problems have frustrated administrative attempts at correctional reform and have produced an organizational environment that has accentuated suspicions concerning women's competence. Coupled with the continuation of informal opportunity structures, these suspicions have inhibited women's advancement. Twenty-seven references are listed. (Author summary modified)
Index Term(s): Correctional organization; Correctional personnel attitudes; Correctional staff management; Female correctional guards; Sex discrimination; Women's rights
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