The relevance of prison climate on prison conflict
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Stobbe, Graham Scott
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Conflict is an enduring reality in prisons. The contrast between a ‘total institution’ and an involuntary client base sets a rich table for conflict. While different approaches have been taken to manage conflict in prison, this study has assessed whether a climate assessment tool can frame new insight into the overall climate of the jail as well as any distinctions between units. The study was conducted as a survey-based social climate assessment on 369 inmates in four separate correctional centres within British Columbia, Canada. This study shows that differences as basic as sentence and population status represent opportunities to engage the conflict milieu of a prison in a targeted way. The Essen Climate Evaluation Schema has significant potential to be used as an effective conflict management tool, with its subscales providing the necessary insight for evidence based responses.
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