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Work demographics and officers' perceptions of the work environment which add to the prediction of at risk alcohol consumption within a large Australian police sample

Davey, Jeremy D., Obst, Patricia L., & Sheehan, Mary C. (2000) Work demographics and officers' perceptions of the work environment which add to the prediction of at risk alcohol consumption within a large Australian police sample. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies and Management, 23(1), pp. 69-81.

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Abstract

This study examined aspects of the work environment, which may impact on individual police officers' risk of harm from alcohol consumption. A self report survey containing demographic questions, the AUDIT and questions relating to perceived control over the job, overtime, pressure, boredom and job satisfaction was completed by 67 per cent of officers in an Australian state police service. The results of the current study indicate that gender, age and marital status, are individual risk factors for problem drinking, as has been shown in previous research. Within the policing context, years of service, job satisfaction, perceived control within the job and being an operational officer, also emerged as significant predictors of at risk alcohol consumption patterns. Findings further suggest that there is a strong norm of drinking at work or after a shift, which suggests a culture of acceptance of drinking within the workplace. This acceptance is strongly predictive of both risk of alcohol dependency and negative consequences from drinking within the police service. This study suggests directions for future research, which may lead to the introduction of informed interventions within the police service that could reduce officers' risk of harm from alcohol consumption.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 8955
Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the journal’s website (see link) or contact the author. Author contact details: p.obst@qut.edu.au
Keywords: policing, work, related stress, working environment, alcohol
DOI: 10.1108/13639510010314625
ISSN: 1363-951X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > DEMOGRAPHY (160300)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Industrial and Organisational Psychology (170107)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200) > Criminology not elsewhere classified (160299)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (111705)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Psychology not elsewhere classified (170199)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2000 Emerald
Deposited On: 27 Aug 2007
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2009 17:41

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