• FACT: Research suggests that 26% of corrections professionals suffer from moderate to extreme depression symptom severity.

  • FACT: Desert Waters Correctional Outreach provides data-driven and evidence-based services for addressing the problem of Corrections Fatigue in workplace cultures.

  • FACT: Corrections Fatigue is a complex deterrent to staff health and functioning in correctional settings and organizations. Desert Waters provides organizations with the necessary tools for addressing problems comprehensively and on the group-level.

  • FACT: While all corrections staff are vulnerable to Corrections Fatigue, Security/Custody staff experience it to the largest extent, on average.

  • The book ''Staying Well: Strategies for Corrections Staff'', by Caterina G. Spinaris, PhD., provides techniques to help staff transition from Corrections Fatigue to Fulfillment.

  • FACT: Severe manifestations of Corrections Fatigue can include dangerous levels of depression, elevated suicide risk, and/or PTSD.

  • The Corrections Fatigue Status Assessment™ (CFSA-v5) is a scientifically developed assessment tool for gauging facility wide levels of Corrections Fatigue. See the Products/Services page for more information.

  • The Depression Danger Scale (DDS) allows organization-level assessment of suicide risk and comparison to national baselines.

  • ''Processing Corrections Work: A Workbook to Combat Corrections Fatigue and Increase Corrections Fulfillment'', by Caterina G. Spinaris and Gregory Morton.

  • The Violence, Injury, and Death Exposure Scale (VIDES) measures the magnitude of traumatic exposure within the workforce.

  • DWCO offers a variety of workshops of particular relevance for corrections staff. See the Trainings page for more information.

  • Dealing with Corrections Fatigue requires education and understanding of its precursors, as well as techniques and tools for managing and preventing it.

  • See the Research page for a variety of downloadable publications highly relevant to corrections staff health and functioning, by Michael D. Denhof, Caterina G. Spinaris, and Gregory R. Morton.

  • FACT: Research suggests that 27% of corrections professionals meet criteria for PTSD.

  • FACT: The suicide rate for individuals who work as corrections professionals far exceeds the rate for individuals in the general population.

  • FACT: Research indicates that corrections professionals with PTSD and/or Depression symptoms demonstrate lower levels of functioning in multiple contexts: work, relationships, ability to enjoy leisure time, care-giving, and personal responsibilities.

  • DWCO's ''Resilient Supervisor™'' course is a highly interactive, outcome-focused, 4-day course that clarifies evidence-supported and resilience-promoting attitudes and behaviors and how to implement them.

  • The Corrections Staff Resilience Inventory (CSRI) is a DWCO assessment service offering that scientifically identifies the presence and absence of resilience-promoting behaviors (RPBs) within the workforce.

  • The RPB Action Plan is a Desert Waters intervention that provides customized training to corrections staff following a scientific assessment battery, with the goal of increasing RPBs, reducing Corrections Fatigue, and promoting staff movement toward Corrections Fulfillment.

  • Subscribe to the ''Correctional Oasis'' monthly publication for educational information, accounts, research excerpts, and testimonials on the nature of corrections work and ways of managing its challenges.

  • The Depression Danger Scale (Individual version) is an online assessment application that DWCO has made available at no charge to individual Corrections Professionals concerned about the extent to which they may be depressed. See the Products/Services page for access.

  • DESERT WATERS TRAINING TESTIMONIAL: ''This training was life-altering to me at a dark time of my life/career. I think that with this information, tools will come fully into my life and my husband’s. The cloud has lifted...'' Anonymous

  • Currently Available: the Corrections Fatigue cost estimator, which estimates the financial cost of un-addressed Corrections Fatigue in your organization's workplace culture.

  • Version 5 of the Corrections Fatigue Status Assessment allows Corrections Fatigue sources to be identified and gauged in 9 key content areas.

  • FACT: Research indicates that 17% of corrections professionals meet criteria for both depression and PTSD concurrently.

  • FACT: Research indicates that, on average, the more Violence, Injury, and Death (VID) events corrections professionals experience, the more likely they are to meet criteria for PTSD or suffer moderate to severe Depression symptom severity.

  • FACT: Changing workplace cultures and reducing Corrections Fatigue among staff requires multi-faceted intervention efforts, including trainings, education, leadership support, and ongoing data-driven assessments.


NEW Product Released!  SONAR-i Offender Assessment Screening Service. The SONAR-i is a scientifically-developed and highly efficient, objective, offender risk/need screening tool available through web access 24/7. With minimal instruction, offenders can complete it on their own using a tablet, phone, or desktop computer in 10-15 minutes. Corrections assessment staff can obtain an instant report of the assessed individual’s results following completion, which includes data-driven estimates of violence risk, suicide risk, mental disorder risk, and substance abuse risk. Call for pricing on unlimited use 6 or 12-month subscriptions (per facility). For a 2-week free trial, apply HERE.

NEW Product Released!  Critical Incident First Aid (CIFA) e-Learning Web Application for Corrections Staff. This is a research-based Critical Incident inoculation experience, available in customized versions for police officers, corrections professionals, and individuals performing similar high stress job functions. The CIFA can be taken online, anonymously, following exposure to Critical Incidents or as a preemptive measure. It provides staff with a variety of information and recommendations for actions based on a scientific assessment. 

NEW Product Released! – The Corrections Staff Resilience Inventory™ (CSRI). This new scientifically-developed assessment tool/service assesses the extent to which various types of Resilience-Promoting Behaviors (RPBs) are taking place within a corrections workforce and targets changes to improve staff resilience, health and functioning overall. Click HERE for additional information.

NEW! The National Institute of Corrections (NIC) has published a resource webpage on Corrections Fatigue.  

Click HERE to access it.

Request Custom Product/Service Package Quote

Indicate a combination of services and/or products you are interested in. Then press Submit. You will receive a quote by email within 48 hours. If you would like a return phone call, indicate (in the comment field) your phone number and a good time for us to contact you. Note: All assessments target the health and functioning of the workplace culture, through group-level assessment. We do not assess individuals.

  • Scientific Assessments
  • Web-based e-Learning Applications
  • Trainings / Workshops
  • Books / Workbooks
  • Inspirational Poster Sets

Estimate the Cost of Corrections Fatigue for your Organization

Corrections Fatigue Costs Estimator

The financial costs of Corrections Fatigue within an organization are significant. Empirical data shows that approximately 20% of staff members in a given corrections organization experience a “high” level of Corrections Fatigue as measured by the Corrections Fatigue Status Assessment™ (CFSA-v5). Individuals who constitute this 20% also account for a disproportionately larger number of sick days compared to the rest of the workforce. Absences due to staff calling in sick require replacement workers who are often paid time and a half to fill in. Based upon this information, the monetary cost of sick days due to Corrections Fatigue can be estimated. In the fields below, enter a typical or average rate of pay for staff in your organization and the approximate total number of employees. A figure will be generated that reflects the annual cost to your organization of unaddressed Corrections Fatigue. Note: This figure only accounts for the additional sick days taken by those scoring in the high Corrections Fatigue range compared to the rest of the employees. It does not include the cost of other manifestations of Corrections Fatigue, such as lower job performance or high turnover. And it does not include the number of additional sick days taken by those experiencing moderate Corrections Fatigue levels. Thus, it reflects only a significant but small portion of Corrections Fatigue’s costs. 

Subscribe to the Correctional Oasis

Corr_Oasis_May-2014_Thumb for websiteTo receive monthly issues of the Correctional Oasis by email, enter your email address below and press send.















Services in Brief


(Hover over product/service titles to obtain definitions)
Click HERE to download a PDF Brochure

Improved Tree

Corrections Fatigue Status Assessment™ (CFSA-v5)

Corrections Staff Resilience Inventory™ (CSRI)

Critical Incident First Aid™ (CIFA) e-Learning Module

Violence, Injury, and Death Exposure Scale (VIDES)

The Depression Danger Scale™ (DDS)

From Corrections Fatigue to Fulfillment™ (CF2F)

RPB Action Plan™

The Resilient Supervisor™ Course



Recent Corrections News / Media

Facebook Posts

“The scientific study of suffering inevitably raises questions of causation, and with these, issues of blame and responsibility. Historically, doctors have highlighted predisposing vulnerability factors for developing PTSD, at the expense of recognizing the reality of their patients' experiences… This search for predisposing factors probably had its origins in the need to deny that all people can be stressed beyond endurance, rather than in solid scientific data; until recently such data were simply not available… When the issue of causation becomes a legitimate area of investigation, one is inevitably confronted with issues of man's inhumanity to man, with carelessness and callousness, with abrogation of responsibility, with manipulation and with failures to protect.”
~ Bessel A. van der Kolk, Traumatic Stress: The Effects of Overwhelming Experience on Mind, Body, and Society
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"Trauma victims cannot recover until they become familiar with and befriend the sensations in their bodies. Being frightened means that you live in a body that is always on guard. Angry people live in angry bodies. The bodies of child-abuse victims are tense and defensive until they find a way to relax and feel safe. In order to change, people need to become aware of their sensations and the way that their bodies interact with the world around them. Physical self-awareness is the first step in releasing the tyranny of the past.

In my practice I begin the process by helping my patients to first notice and then describe the feelings in their bodies—not emotions such as anger or anxiety or fear but the physical sensations beneath the emotions: pressure, heat, muscular tension, tingling, caving in, feeling hollow, and so on. I also work on identifying the sensations associated with relaxation or pleasure. I help them become aware of their breath, their gestures and movements.

All too often, however, drugs such as Abilify, Zyprexa, and Seroquel, are prescribed instead of teaching people the skills to deal with such distressing physical reactions. Of course, medications only blunt sensations and do nothing to resolve them or transform them from toxic agents into allies.

The mind needs to be reeducated to feel physical sensations, and the body needs to be helped to tolerate and enjoy the comforts of touch. Individuals who lack emotional awareness are able, with practice, to connect their physical sensations to psychological events. Then they can slowly reconnect with themselves.”

~ Bessel A. van der Kolk, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
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