skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 229026 Find in a Library
Title: Correctional Staff Attitudes After One Year of Employment: Perceptions of Leniency and Support for Inmate Rehabilitation
Journal: Corrections Compendium  Volume:34  Issue:3  Dated:Fall 2009  Pages:9-15,17
Author(s): Jacqueline L. Young; Michael E. Antonio
Date Published: 2009
Page Count: 8
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Based on prior research that indicated correctional maintenance personnel and correctional officers exhibited more punitive and rule-oriented attitudes toward inmates compared with other correctional staff, the current study tested the hypothesis that after 1 year of employment by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (PADOC), correctional officers would report a stronger preference than other staff for following correctional rules rather than allowing for leniency toward inmates.
Abstract: Findings from a self-administered survey support the hypothesis that correctional officers - more so than clerical support, maintenance personnel, and treatment staff - believed that their institution was too lenient on inmates. Staff in job categories with a majority of female employees (treatment staff) expressed concerns for how inmates are treated, and staff in job categories with a majority of male employees (correctional officers) commented about institutional security and inmate discipline. Additional findings, however, showed that all correctional staff recognized that their behavior impacted inmate treatment outcomes, and some indicated the importance of educating employees about expressing overtly negative attitudes toward inmates. Survey findings suggest that staff who received the Reinforcing Positive Behavior (RPB) training 1 year earlier apparently understood and supported the central tenets of the training program; however, additional training might be needed to correct negative attitudes that persist among correctional staff. The survey was completed by 107 clerical-support staff, 51 maintenance personnel, 133 treatment staff, and 174 correctional officers. Employees who completed the survey had been employed 1 year at PADOC and were the first to participate in the RPB training during their orientation. The survey asked respondents whether they believed their institution was too lenient on inmates and whether or not they believed it important that correctional staff study attitudes about inmate treatment and rehabilitation efforts. 3 tables and 28 references
Main Term(s): Correctional Officers
Index Term(s): Comparative analysis; Correctional personnel attitudes; Correctional rehabilitation training; Custody vs treatment conflict; Inmate staff relations; Pennsylvania; Rehabilitation
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.