Thesis

52 Chapter 2 IX. Professional conduct This main theme focuses on individual challenges of professional conduct, such as limitations in dealing with or doubts about whether to cross boundaries. The first subtheme reflects a ‘sense of duty’ that staff feel toward colleagues or prisoners. Most cases show this sense of duty is negatively affected by workload-related constraints, and a few show a lack of clarity about the organization’s appreciation of tasks: Should I continue facilitating a specific rehabilitation training for prisoners or should I phase it out due to a lack of organizational support? Other cases show dilemmas regarding ‘task versus convenience’, where staff experience procedures as cumbersome and wonder whether shortcuts are an option. The final subtheme of ‘self-control’ presents situations in which staff experience doubts about professional limits of self-control in intense situations. Is it justified to express emotions and frustrations in reactions toward prisoners, colleagues or external visitors? Distribution of themes within the teams As multiple types of teams participated in our research, we finally analyzed whether moral themes were associated with specific teams or professional backgrounds. Almost all themes contain dilemmas from a mix of teams. However, certain teams are overrepresented or underrepresented in some subthemes. For example, ‘case managers of the re-integration services’ frequently expressed moral dilemmas related to a high workload, most of which come under the subtheme of ‘prioritizing’ their work. Teams of security guards expressed no moral dilemmas in the main theme of ‘working with prisoners’; instead, their dilemmas often concerned the subtheme ‘security risks’. However, the dilemmas, within those ‘security risks’, were not directly linked to prisoners. Most of the mentioned dilemmas related to decisions or actions of colleagues that could increase security risks. Furthermore, it is remarkable that teams of health care professionals express moral dilemmas in all themes and subthemes. Middle management teams are overrepresented in the main theme of ‘compliance with top-down vision’, and the subtheme of ‘discontent with policy’.

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