Indices of stress and burn out among prison warders
Kamugi, J. Wanjiru
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This study was designed to investigate the extent to which prison warders in Thika Prison are stressed and the extent to which this negatively influenced or affected their morale and work performance. The study further explored the extent to which such independent variables like gender, age and work experience correlated with the amount of burnout experienced by warders. The inspiration of the study arose from the conviction that prison warders play a very important role in rehabilitating criminals and that their work should be sufficiently appreciated. It is in this light that the issue of warder burnout was addressed or considered important for investigation. The study targeted both the male and female warders of the prison. A total of a 100 warders took place in the study. Both the Chi Square (X2) and the One Way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) -.Mac test were used to test the hypothesis investigated. The findings show that prison warders in Thika prison are stressed and experience burnout, job dissatisfaction or low working morale. The trend of the results demonstrates that warder burnout is a critical problem in Thika prison that needs to be addressed seriously. It appears to be related to the brutality meted on the inmates by the warders and the attacks on warden by the inmates leaving one wondering if there is any relationship between such behaviour and stress, frustration and burnout. Implications of the study were drawn and recommendations were made aimed at throwing tight on the issue of warder burnout and hopefully enlightening the policy makers and planners on the need to look more critically into employees' mental health. Further research is suggested along the line taken in this study to strengthen the generalizability of findings arising from the present study.