THE PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL IMPACT OF WORKING WITH YOUNG PEOPLE IN CUSTODY: EXPLORING THE PRESENCE AND EXTENT OF SECONDARY TRAUMATIC STRESS (RESEARCH IN PROGRESS)
V. C. L. Hancock, Birmingham City University, UK
The overarching aim of the research is to determine the extent, prevalence, and severity of Secondary Traumatic Stress (STS) in Youth Justice Officers, and their coping strategies. Recently adapted to include exploration of STS and the Covid-19 Pandemic.
This research will involve a sequential mixed-methods design; qualitative and quantitative methods will be deployed to gather and analyse data. Participants are “Youth Justice Officers” - custodial staff specifically trained/recruited to work with young people in custody aged between 10-18. Participants will be recruited from Secure Childrens Homes, Secure Training Centres and Youth Offending Institutions.
Quantitative: A battery of questionnaires are included in the research design/methodology that will be used to allow for sufficient exploration of the research questions, relating to STS, Coping Strategies and Covid-19. These are:
- The Secondary Traumatic Stress Scale
- The Brief COPE
- The COVID-19 Pandemic Mental Health Questionnaire (CoPaQ) -
Participants will be selected for this ‘2nd stage’ with the distinct purpose of improving the understanding of the quantitative findings. This will take the form of individual semi-structured interviews with participants that have previously completed the quantitative component. This process is chosen to allow for open-ended questions and for conversation to facilitate engaging interviews with participants.
In line with current Covid-19 guidance/Ethics Approval Parameters; questionnaires will be administered electronically using Qualtrics; 1:1 interviews will be conducted remotely.
It is anticipated that some preliminary findings will be established prior to the OH Conference in June 2022 and will be included within the conference poster.
Diehm, R., & Roland, D., (2015). The impact of exposure to trauma in prison officers. InPsych, 37 (1), 34-37. URL https://www.psychology.org.au/inpsych/2015/february/diehm