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Workplace stressors for investigative interviewers of child-abuse victims

Powell, Martine B, Guadagno, Belinda L and Cassematis, Peter 2013, Workplace stressors for investigative interviewers of child-abuse victims, Policing: an international journal of police strategies & management, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 1-24, doi: 10.1108/PIJPSM-05-2012-0039.

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Title Workplace stressors for investigative interviewers of child-abuse victims
Author(s) Powell, Martine BORCID iD for Powell, Martine B orcid.org/0000-0001-5092-1308
Guadagno, Belinda L
Cassematis, Peter
Journal name Policing: an international journal of police strategies & management
Volume number 36
Issue number 3
Start page 1
End page 24
Total pages 24
Publisher Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Place of publication Bingley, England
Publication date 2013
ISSN 1363-951X
1758-695X
Keyword(s) investigative interviewing
job demands
work stress
child abuse investigation
Summary Purpose - This study aimed to identify the nature and prevalence of workplace stressors faced by interviewers of child sexual assault victims.

Design/methodology/approach - Sixty-eight professionals (police and child protection workers) were invited to anonymously post their perceptions of workplace stressors on an internet forum as part of an investigative interviewing online training course. Specifically, participants were asked to reflect on salient sources of stress encountered in their role of interviewing sexually abused children.

Findings - Three key stressors were identified across the study’s professional groups: (1) inadequate recognition of specialised skills; (2) high workload demands; and (3) interagency tensions. Consistent with previous research, exposure to child abuse reports was not raised as a stressor.

Research limitations/implications - Our study generated suggestions for modifying management practices; however, future research should identify and trial strategies for improving workplace climate in child abuse investigation.

Practical implications - As the stressors isolated by participants related to workplace climate rather than exposure to victims’ accounts of child abuse, minimising negative consequences of work stressors requires changes to workplace culture and practice. Workplace climates need to be modified so that the demands are offset by resources.

Originality/value - Because of its online, anonymous nature, this was the first study to offer participants the opportunity to honestly disclose primary sources of stress in child abuse investigation. The research also makes a much-needed contribution to an area of police practice that is vital yet often overlooked.
Notes Reproduced with the kind permission of the copyright owner.
Language eng
DOI 10.1108/PIJPSM-05-2012-0039
Field of Research 170104 Forensic Psychology
Socio Economic Objective 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2013, Emerald
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30055521

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Psychology
Open Access Collection
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Created: Fri, 30 Aug 2013, 12:58:46 EST by Barb Lavelle

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.