206931 Father, mother, and youth attributions for youth farm injuries and associations with risk taking orientation

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Zolinda Stoneman, PhD , Institute on Human Development and Disability, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
Hamida Jinnah, PhD , Institute on Human Development and Disability, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
Parents assign dangerous farm work, including work involving powerful farm equipment, to children. Farm youth have high injury rates. Little is known about parents' causal attributions for farm injuries. It is not clear whether mothers, fathers, and youth have similar beliefs about causes of youth farm injuries. This paper presents preliminary data from a prevention study funded by NIOSH. Seventy farm families participated. Fathers, mothers, and youth (10 - 16 yrs,) rated the importance of 19 possible causes of youth farm injuries. Ratings made by fathers and mothers were similar. Both rated four causes as most important: 1) lack of safety knowledge; 2) not paying attention, 3) taking risks they should not take, and 4) lack of skill/experience using equipment. Lack of physical or cognitive development was not viewed as an important reason for youth injuries; youth were not viewed as being too young for assigned work. Youth were more likely than their parents to rate “showing off” and disobedience as important causes of farm injuries. Fathers and youth who were high in risk taking orientation were more likely to believe that farm injuries resulted from youth taking unnecessary risks; a similar pattern was not found for mothers. Fathers' (but not mothers') and youths' risk taking orientations were positively correlated, regardless of youth gender. Youth took more risks than fathers, who took more risks than mothers. Findings suggest the importance of helping farm families consider the developmental readiness of youth to undertake farm work in order to lessen injury risk.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss father and mother attributions for youth injuries on farms Explain the relationship between parental causal injury attributions and intervention strategies focusing on youth developmental readiness.

Keywords: Adolescents, Injury Risk

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a PhD and am PI on a NIOSH grant studying youth farm safety
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.