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Do Fairness and Equity Matter?: An Examination of Organizational Justice Among Correctional Officers in Adult Prisons

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice and Behavior Volume: 36 Issue: 7 Dated: July 2009 Pages: 695-711
Faye S. Taxman; Jill A. Gordon
Date Published
July 2009
17 pages
This study examined factors that affect organizational justice, particularly as it relates to the work environment among correctional officers.
The study examined hypotheses regarding how perception of fairness affects organizational climate, commitment to goals, job stress, and officers' assessment of supervisory leadership and safety within the prison walls. The study found that the organizational justice hypotheses were supported. Results found consistent support of both organizational justice dimensions as leading predictors of job stress and variants of organization commitment (climate for learning and type of organizational climate). In addition, procedural justice is dependably related to individual perceptions of fear and perceived risk of inmate/officer victimization. The study demonstrated the importance of assessing the level of organizational justice within the prison environment. The largest lesson learned is that the general notion of treating others with respect is a core factor in creating a positive environment to move an organization forward. This study adds to a small body of literature on how organizational justice affects organizational change, culture, and commitment, as well as the correctional officer's perception of risk and fear in the workplace. Data were collected from 1,231 correctional line staff across one State's prison institutions. Tables, appendix, and references