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By Bradshaw, Skinners, Smitson

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Sample text

However, the FRS sample of fathers does not include (because they cannot be identified) non-resident fathers who have no children living with them. We found 3 per cent of men in the FRS aged 16–65, with no children living in their household, who were paying maintenance/child support. Just over a third (36 per cent) of the fathers in this survey were living alone at the time of the interview and 42 per cent were living with a new partner. Among the rest, 4 per cent were living with some of their own children, but not with female partners; therefore some of these non-resident fathers were also lone parents to some of their children and some had shared care of their children who happened to be resident at the time of the interview.

Clearly there may have been a reluctance on behalf of these fathers to acknowledge or admit violent behaviour. Of the fathers who had been married, 83 per cent had obtained a divorce by the time of the interview. 6. Adultery and unreasonable behaviour were most commonly given as the grounds for divorce. In the Bradshaw and Millar (1991) study of lone parents, unreasonable behaviour was cited as the most common reason for divorce, though at that time irretrievable breakdown was not an option. Of those ex-married who had not yet been divorced, 51 per cent intended to obtain a divorce in the future.

The problem was not eased by NOP, which obtained a low agreement rate and a poor interview rate, even among those fathers who agreed to be interviewed. Clearly experience now teaches us that, if an omnibus survey is to be used to identify subsamples of the population, it is undesirable to separate the screening interview from the follow-up interview. Given the response rate of only 38 per cent of those men who identified themselves as non-resident fathers, we have been at pains in this chapter to explore response bias first, by compar ing the character istics of respondents and nonrespondents.

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Absent Fathers by Bradshaw, Skinners, Smitson


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