Journal Article

Psychological Distress in Staff of a Social Services District Office: A Pilot Study


in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 26, issue 3, pages 389-398
Published in print June 1996 | ISSN: 0045-3102
e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Psychological Distress in Staff of a Social Services District Office: A Pilot Study

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This comparison study of fieldworkers and administrative workers in a social services district office addressed three research questions. Would fieldworkers show more internality and would they perceive higher job demands than administrative workers, and would there be a positive relationship between perceived stress and perceived job demands for all workers? The General Health Questionnaire 28 was administered, in addition to a job demand inventory. Self-reported absenteeism due to illness was considered, and locus of control was considered as a moderator of stress, as were years of service, age, and whether the employee worked part- or full-time. Because fieldworkers might generally be thought to be under more stress due to their work content than their support staff, data from fieldworkers were compared with those from administrators. Gender differences were also sought. Statistical tests showed no significant differences for gender or between the administrative staff and fieldwork staff for internality or job demand. A positive relationship was evident between perceived stress and perceived job demand with a correlation of 0–40 (p <0·05). In addition, over 72 per cent of the sample scored above the cut-off point on the GHQ 28 indicating psychiatric morbidity. The implications of the results are discussed.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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