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Mental Health in Military - Book Report/Review Example

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In Base Study in Occupational Stress and Organisational Decline, Joyce Adkins does a cross-sectional understanding of the Williams air base closure, and blends it with a mixture of the epidemiological and clinical perspectives. The book is a psychological exploration of the military world from an angle of understanding that breaks the traditional canon.
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Mental Health in Military
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Download file to see previous pages Joyce Adkins divides stress into acute effects and chronic effects; the acute effects being positive and the chronic being negative. Being able to shut off the stressor effect of being deployed in a warzone, or having more buffers in place, can help improve the long-term disposition of soldiers as they return home from their high-stress deployments.
Regarding the Williams air base closure, Joyce begins by pointing out how the Pilot training classes continued for the first year. The author points out the process by which the baser leadership chartered a detailed time line and how the entire process involved many ramifications for varying levels for each subsystem. The book illustrates how the process of base closure removes the element of control in terms of both timing and choices, especially when large groups of individuals are relocating at the same time.
What the book does is also point out the minute details that ail the contemporary American military. Talking about the William's base closure, the book points out issues like the fact that military men have no incremental retirement fund. Moreover, it also describes other criterions like voluntary separation incentives, involuntary separations based on future potential (defined by promotability) which the military personals lacked.
The author goes on to chart the manner how the process of re-absorption is done after base closures. What happens in such a situation, according to Joyce, is that is that the individuals read the "want ad", a computerised chart that offered replacements for individuals to re-locate in their choice of location. This, however, had no guarantee that the individuals would be given postings of their choice. Joyce points out the relative failures of such want ads and showed how its implementation only aggravated the sense of disunity amongst the individuals. The book elucidates how the re-assignment policy hit the enlisted personnel most hard, as the closure of the bases meant that they were left with significantly lower control than they enjoyed before, and there followed a spate of increased conflict with peers associated with competition for limited assignments.
The closure of bases also brings a decreased control over the employment situation, a forced choice between relocating or entering into an employment contract with a private firm, loss of the civil service retirement package, loss of professional identity and a constant fear of demotion in the new profession. The realities of relocating like that of their children going to a different school also becomes a huge psychological problem. Interestingly, these effects of base closure differ from function to function and the availability of jobs in the DOD and the local community.
The book shows how the high levels of stress within organisations have been linked to high accident rates, poor working environment, general job disappointment, carelessness and mistakes. Closure of a base, which is a high stress environment, results in having behavioural and emotional symptoms including anxiety, depression and grief.
A good match between employee skills and job characteristics is important to job success and to decreased occupational stress. Motivations for the job also cease when the job has or poses no success or ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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