Participation in operation starting line, experience of negative emotions, and incidence of negative behavior

Academic Article


  • The prison industry in the United States has experienced an unprecedented period of growth during the past three decades. Growing dissatisfaction with the monetary investment in the criminal justice system, state-level budget constraints, and high recidivism rates have led many criminal justice professionals to rethink issues of offender resocialization and rehabilitation. Faith-based prison programs are increasingly being used as inexpensive methods for potentially improving the institutional behavior of inmates and reducing their likelihood of postrelease arrest. Unfortunately, however, there is little systematic research on this issue. Using data from Mississippi's largest state prison, the authors explore the relationship between participation in the faith-based prison event, Operation Starting Line, and subsequent experience of negative emotions and incidence of negative behaviors. Descriptive results suggest modest, yet positive, effects of attendance at the event. The article concludes with comments about the potential efficacy of faith-based prison programs and suggestions for future research. © 2005 Sage Publications.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Kerley KR; Matthews TL; Schulz JT
  • Start Page

  • 410
  • End Page

  • 426
  • Volume

  • 49
  • Issue

  • 4