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Mental Health & Trauma among Incarcerated Persons: Development of a Training Curriculum for Correctional Officers.

NCJ Number
American Journal of Criminal Justice Volume: 44 Issue: 3 Dated: 2019 Pages: 457-473
Dana DeHart; Aidyn L. Iachini
Date Published
17 pages
Since serious mental illness and trauma among persons incarcerated in prisons and jails are issues of growing concern across the nation, this article describes a three-phase process of needs assessment, media development, and pilot testing for a comprehensive curriculum for training correctional officers in the mental health needs of incarcerated persons.
Following the pilot training, there was a significant increase in correctional officers' knowledge from pretest to posttest, and their ratings of course content and delivery methods were positive. The open-access, downloadable curriculum includes a PDF facilitator's manual, participant handouts and activity cards, PowerPoint presentation slides, and brief videos or animations. The curriculum is ideally suited for delivery to correctional officers working at state and federal prisons, and it may also be useful for training officers working in jails, community corrections, or other criminal justice roles. (publisher abstract modified)