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Open AccessArticle

(Un)bounded Social Work?—Analysis of Working Conditions in Refugee and Homeless Aid in Relation to Perceived Job Stress and Job Satisfaction

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Institute for Occupational and Maritime Medicine (ZfAM), University Medical Centre Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), 20459 Hamburg, Germany
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Competence Centre for Epidemiology and Health Services Research for Healthcare Professionals (CVcare), University Medical Centre Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), 20246 Hamburg, Germany
3
Department of Occupational Medicine, Hazardous Substances and Public Health, Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services (BGW), 22089 Hamburg, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(2), 601; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17020601
Received: 18 December 2019 / Revised: 13 January 2020 / Accepted: 14 January 2020 / Published: 17 January 2020
Little is known about working conditions of social workers providing help in homeless and refugee aid. Therefore, the present study examined their work-related demands, job and personal resources as well as workplace violence, domain-specific demands, and gender-related differences. Job demands and resources were analyzed with regard to their association with job stress and job satisfaction. Two hundred and fifty-three social workers (69.2% female, 30.8% male) from four federal states in Germany (Berlin, Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein, and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania) took part in the cross-sectional quantitative online survey that included validated scales and exploratory items especially developed for the target group. Multiple regression analysis showed that resilience as a personal resource was a significant negative predictor of perceived job stress. Emotional demands were positively related with perceived job stress. Meaning of work and social support were strongly associated with job satisfaction. Language and bureaucratic barriers as well as being affected by clients’ experiences were the domain-specific demands named most often. The study offers insights into the work-related demands and resources and their respective impact on perceived job stress and job satisfaction experienced by social workers in refugee and homeless aid. In order to ensure health and safety for this occupational group, health promotion measures focusing on structural aspects are recommended. View Full-Text
Keywords: job satisfaction; perceived job stress; resilience; social work; working conditions job satisfaction; perceived job stress; resilience; social work; working conditions
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Robelski, S.; Mette, J.; Wirth, T.; Kiepe, N.; Nienhaus, A.; Harth, V.; Mache, S. (Un)bounded Social Work?—Analysis of Working Conditions in Refugee and Homeless Aid in Relation to Perceived Job Stress and Job Satisfaction. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 601.

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