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Assessing the Link Between Exposure to a Violent Prison Context and Inmate Maladjustment [2016]

The importance of prison safety has generated a number of studies of the correlates to inmate maladjustment, and researchers have found that both individual and environmental characteristics impact the level of maladjustment across prisons. However, no studies have examined the impact of exposure to a violent prison context on maladjustment. We hypothesize that exposure to a violent prison context directly increases maladjustment among the inmate population. We also expect that exposure to a violent prison context moderates the relationships between individual-level risk and protective factors and maladjustment. Analyses of data collected from a national sample of inmates confined in state prisons revealed that exposure to violent prison contexts is associated with higher rates of inmate maladjustment. We also found that exposure to a violent prison context moderates the relationships between individual-level risk and protective factors and some indicators of maladjustment.

Benjamin Steiner, Benjamin Meade
Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, Vol 32, Issue 4, 2016
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