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Child abuse investigation: an in depth analysis of how police officers perceive and cope with daily work challenges

Wright, Rebecca, Powell, Martine and Ridge, Damien 2006, Child abuse investigation: an in depth analysis of how police officers perceive and cope with daily work challenges, Policing : an international journal of police strategies & management, vol. 29, no. 3, pp. 498-512, doi: 10.1108/13639510610684728.

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Title Child abuse investigation: an in depth analysis of how police officers perceive and cope with daily work challenges
Author(s) Wright, Rebecca
Powell, MartineORCID iD for Powell, Martine orcid.org/0000-0001-5092-1308
Ridge, Damien
Journal name Policing : an international journal of police strategies & management
Volume number 29
Issue number 3
Start page 498
End page 512
Publisher Emerald Group Publishing
Place of publication Bingley, Eng.
Publication date 2006
ISSN 1363-951X
1758-695X
Keyword(s) child welfare
police
stress
Summary Purpose: The purpose of the current study was two-fold: to explore police officers' perceptions of the daily challenges involved in child abuse investigation and how those challenges affect their ability to undertake child abuse investigations, and to explore how these challenges are managed on a daily basis. Design/methodology/approach: This study employed a qualitative research design. In-depth interviews were conducted with a diverse sample of 25 police officers working in child abuse units across three Australian states. Findings: Inductive thematic analysis revealed that heavy caseload and collaboration with other professional groups are two key sources of negative work stress frequently associated with child abuse investigation. Further, despite the provision of organisational strategies aimed at reducing work stress, the officers tended to rely predominantly on informal coping mechanisms.  Research limitations/implications: This study has raised many questions for further research aimed at developing interventions to assist police organisations in managing work stress. Originality/value: This paper provides an in-depth analysis of the key challenges associated with child abuse investigation and the coping mechanisms employed for overcoming these challenges from the unique perspective of police officers authorised to investigate child abuse.
Notes Reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright owner.
Language eng
DOI 10.1108/13639510610684728
Field of Research 170199 Psychology not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 0 Not Applicable
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30003839

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.