Job conditions, unmet expectations, and burnout in public child welfare workers: How different from other social workers?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

The purpose of this research is to compare public child welfare workers' perception of job conditions, unmet expectations, and burnout to those of social workers in other settings. Using data from a sample of 408 social workers identified from a cross-sectional random survey of California registered social workers, a series of ANOVA and multiple regression analysis was performed. Results of ANOVA revealed that public child welfare workers experienced higher workloads, greater role conflict, and depersonalization, and had lower personal accomplishment. However, they had similar levels of unmet expectations and emotional exhaustion as other social workers. Adjusted for perceived job conditions and demographic characteristics, regression analyses revealed that public child welfare workers had significantly higher levels of depersonalization than those of private child welfare workers. Finally, workers in public settings exhibited significantly lower levels of personal accomplishment than social workers in private settings did, regardless of their practice field. Implications for organizational practices and future research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)358-367
Number of pages10
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Volume33
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011 Feb 1

Keywords

  • Child welfare
  • Depersonalization
  • Job stress
  • Social workers

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