Organizational justice and mental health: A multi‐level test of justice interactions

Ronald Fischer, Amina Abubakar, Josephine Nyaboke Arasa
Published Online:
20 Sep 2013
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 49 Issue 2

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We examine main and interaction effects of organizational justice at the individual and the organizational levels on general health in a Kenyan sample. We theoretically differentiate between two different interaction patterns of justice effects: buffering mechanisms based on trust versus intensifying explanations of justice interactions that involve psychological contract violations. Using a two‐level hierarchical linear model with responses from 427 employees in 29 organizations, only interpersonal justice at level 1 demonstrated a significant main effect. Interactions between distributive and interpersonal justice at both the individual and the collective levels were found. The intensifying hypothesis was supported: the relationship between distributive justice and mental health problems was strongest when interpersonal justice was high. This contrasts with buffering patterns described in Western samples. We argue that justice interaction patterns shift depending on the economic conditions and sociocultural characteristics of employees studied.

© 2013 International Union of Psychological Science