Journal article

Stigmatized service workers in crisis: mitigating the effects of negative media

SJ Pervan, LL Bove

JOURNAL OF SERVICE THEORY AND PRACTICE | EMERALD GROUP PUBLISHING LTD | Published : 2015

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine how a crisis affects public attitudes toward stigmatized service workers (SSWs) who are blamed by the media for the event. Design/methodology/approach – Hypotheses grounded in two theories, crisis communication and empathic concern, are tested using two experimental design studies of 180 and 107 adult respondents. Findings – The effects of both empathy (positive) and anger (negative) on attitudes toward the SSWs involved in crisis are mediated by controllability of attribution of crisis. Empathic concern mitigates negative public attitudes toward stigmatized workers and appears to remove the effect of anger but only when the crisis severity..

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University of Melbourne Researchers