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NCJ Number: 221618 Find in a Library
Title: Exploring the Utility of General Strain Theory in Explaining Problematic Alcohol Consumption by Police Officers
Journal: Journal of Criminal Justice  Volume:35  Issue:6  Dated:December 2007  Pages:596-611
Author(s): Marc L. Swatt; Chris L. Gibson; Nicole Leeper Piquero
Date Published: December 2007
Page Count: 16
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Drawing upon general strain theory, this study explored the relationship between police officer stress and problematic alcohol use.
Abstract: Consistent with theoretical expectations, regression analyses showed that the relationship between work-related strain and drinking prevalence and problematic alcohol consumption was mediated through anxiety/depression. Future replication research is recommended and needed to determine if these results are sample specific or apply to other adult populations. Research has shown a link between police officer stress and negative coping strategies, particularly alcohol consumption. Unfortunately, most research on this topic has not been theoretically informed. Agnew’s general strain theory (GST) offers a potential theoretical explanation for this relationship. The purpose of this study was two-fold. First, whether GST could explain drinking prevalence and problematic alcohol consumption among police officers was examined. Second, the generalizability of GST to a sample of police officers was examined. Using data collected from a large sample of Baltimore, MD police officers, support for GST was found. Tables, appendix, notes and references
Main Term(s): Police occupational stress
Index Term(s): Behavior under stress; Burnout syndrome; Police drug use; Police work attitudes; Psychological theories; Strain theory
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