Theorizing Safety Informed Settings: Supporting Staff at Youth Residential Facilities

Corianna E. Sichel, Esther Burson, Shabnam Javdani, Erin B. Godfrey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Each year approximately 48,000 youth are incarcerated in residential placement facilities (YRFs) in the United States. The limited existing literature addressing the workforce in these settings paints a complicated picture. The YRF workforce is highly motivated to work with legal system involved youth. However, YRF staff report high rates of burnout, job fatigue, and work-related stress. The current paper proposes solutions to persistent problems faced by staff in these settings by integrating literature from criminology, organizational psychology, trauma-informed care, and community psychology. In doing so, we highlight previously overlooked aspects of intervention for trauma-organized settings and respond to recent calls for community psychologists to take a more active role in the adaptation of trauma-informed care in community settings. We conclude by advancing three recommendations, drawn from setting-level theory and inspired by the principles of trauma-informed care, to transform YRFs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)405-417
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican journal of community psychology
Volume63
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2019

Keywords

  • Juvenile justice
  • Settings
  • Theory
  • Trauma-informed care
  • Workforce
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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