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NCJ Number: 199928 Find in a Library
Title: How to Reduce Stress & Construction Costs in Designing Correctional and Detention Environments
Journal: Corrections Today Magazine  Dated:April 2003  Pages:110-113
Author(s): James F. Gross; Manuel J. Suarez
Date Published: April 2003
Page Count: 4
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article presents cost-effective and easy-to-implement stress-reduction measures for use in correctional facilities.
Abstract: Stress is described as one of the most pervasive problems in America. Stress in a correctional institution can cause many unnecessary problems for inmates and correctional officers. The authors present eight stress-reduction elements for correctional institutions that are easy to implement and cost-effective. Sufficient space in day rooms is essential in order to cut down on stress levels. Adding extra space is cost-effective if rectangular day rooms are designed, instead of triangular rooms, because off-the-shelf construction products are already rectangular, unlike triangular products, which have to be custom made. Natural light is another stress reliever that can be easily provided for while still ensuring the security of the facility. Furthermore, if enough natural light is allowed into a correctional facility, money is saved on lighting bills. Clean air is the third stress-reduction element discussed; the authors present examples of covered walkways and breezeways that were implemented in Florida. Noise control is also essential for stress reduction. Most current correctional housing units operate at 100 decibels, which is as loud as a small plane taking off. Simply by adding insulation, the noise level can be reduced tremendously. Exercise, stimulus, proper sanitation, contrasting environments, and proactive management are the other stress reduction elements described by the authors. All of these elements, if implemented, would help reduce the stress inherent in correctional environments, would help reduce staff turnover, and would make for a more pleasant environment for both inmates and staff alike.
Main Term(s): Corrections occupational stress; Stress management
Index Term(s): Correctional facilities; Correctional Facility interior design; Correctional institutions (adult)
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