Journal of Community Health

, Volume 38, Issue 1, pp 187–194 | Cite as

Unheard Voices: A Qualitative Exploration of Fathers’ Access of Child Safety Information

  • Lise L. OlsenEmail author
  • Sami Kruse
  • Mariana Brussoni
Original Paper


To gain an understanding about fathers’ perspectives and practices related to accessing information on childhood safety. Qualitative interviews were carried out with 32 fathers of children aged 2–7 years in British Columbia, Canada. Interview questions investigated whether fathers accessed information on child safety issues, the type of information they searched for, and the resources they used. Transcripts were examined using thematic content analysis. Fathers reported varied processes for searching for information and emphasized a need for credible, synthesized information. The internet was the source of child safety information fathers mentioned most frequently. Published information, resources from community organizations including general, educational and health organizations and access to personal connections were also seen as important. Fathers’ involvement in childcare is growing and they play a significant role in ensuring children’s safety. Increasing fathers’ knowledge on safety related practices can contribute to a reduction in childhood injuries. The results of this study provide an in-depth exploration of fathers’ perspectives and practices that can inform the design of materials and dissemination strategies to help increase and optimize access to safety information.


Injury Fathering Health communication Qualitative methods 



This research and article was made possible by a grant from Vancouver Foundation (Grant # BCM08-0033). Career support for Dr. Brussoni is provided by a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research scholar award. We are grateful to the 32 fathers who gave generously of their time and insights. We are indebted to David Sheftel, Anne George and Joan Bottorff for their contributions to the research study, and to Glenn Hope of the BC Council for Families for his support of the research.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lise L. Olsen
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Sami Kruse
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mariana Brussoni
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.British Columbia Injury Research and Prevention UnitVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Child and Family Research InstituteVancouverCanada
  3. 3.Department of PediatricsUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  4. 4.School of Population and Public HealthUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  5. 5.British Columbia Children’s HospitalVancouverCanada

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