Working with pupils who use alcohol and drugs: Emotional labour and crime prevention of Swedish high school staff members

Sophia Yakhlef, Goran Basic

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Abstract

The last decades have exhibited changes in societal responses to criminal justice, such as informal social control exerted beyond the justice system. This study explores the emotional labour experienced by Swedish high school staff members regarding their efforts with pupils who use alcohol or drugs. Drawing on 36 interviews we demonstrate how their work surpasses the demands associated with a traditional school environment, becoming more like the work of police officers than that of educators or counsellors. This study provides in-depth knowledge of role conflict and role ambiguity due to a lack of clear guidelines regarding blurred aspects of crime prevention, caring, and control, in addition to a high workload and emotionally challenging situations. The findings suggest that there are various conflicting demands regarding the work tasks and emotional commitment of the high school staff members; on the one hand to provide emotional support and ensure a good educational environment for all pupils, and on the other hand to act as informal police officers or supervisors of pupils with these problems.
Translated title of the contributionAtt arbeta med elever som använder alkohol och droger: Emotionellt lönearbete och brottsförebyggande arbete blandgymnasiepersonal i Sverige
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Journal of Social Work
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023-Nov-15

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Sociology (504)

Keywords

  • Emotional labour
  • role conflict
  • teachers and high school staff members
  • crime prevention
  • alcohol and drug use in Swedish high schools

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