[LINK] Australian Psychological Society take on the "fridge magnet"

hartr@interweft.com.au hartr@interweft.com.au
Sat, 8 Feb 2003 10:20:48 +1000 (EST)


Hi

A friend of mine who is a psychologist sent me this...

-- 
Robert Hart					 hartr@interweft.com.au
Strategic IT & open source consulting                +61 (0)438 385 533
Brisbane, Australia			    http://www.interweft.com.au

                                                             
                                                                                          
                         FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 
                           FEBRUARY 07, 2003 
 
     Federal Government's `Threat of Terrorism Booklet' likely to 
                         increase fear and anxiety 
                                            
The Federal Government's `Threat of Terrorism' booklet is likely to
increase fear and uncertainty amongst Australians, according to the
Australian Psychological Society's (APS) interest group, Psychologists
for the Promotion of World Peace (PPOWP). Dr Susie Burke, National
Convenor of PPOWP, said it was unfortunate that the booklet raises
psychological issues of fear, uncertainty, and insecurity, but offers
no advice on how to handle these emotions. "People who have
experienced traumas in the past are particularly at risk of reacting
negatively", Dr Burke said.  Receiving the information pack may prompt
people to revisit in their minds September 11 and the Bali bombing,
she added.
 
APS psychologists advise people who experience increased anxiety as a
result of reading this booklet to talk to others about their fears
and/or seek professional help for their concerns.
 
Dr Burke also criticised the booklet for it's limiting its focus on
defence and security as the way to reduce the threat of terrorism.
 
"If the Australian Government is serious about reducing the threat of
terrorism it has to also address the root causes of violence in the
world, such as poverty, inequality and injustice, and help create
conditions in other countries that meet the basic human rights of all
people", she said.  For example, there is not a word in the booklet
about minimising the threat of terrorism by peace-building and
preventive diplomacy; about training our leaders and politicians in
dispute resolution, mediation and conciliation; or about investing
money in schools and higher education in teaching Australians how to
resolve conflict peacefully.
 
 Dr Burke said it is now widely agreed that the systematic frustration
of human needs is a major cause of conflict, which may escalate to
violence and terrorism if these concerns are ignored.
 
"We urge the Government to help build a safer and more peaceful world
rather than resorting to fearful, defensive strategies and a narrow
perspective", she said.
 
For more information contact: 
Dr Susie Burke, Psychologists for the Promotion of World Peace 
Phone: (03) 5473 4346 
Joe Piotrowski, Psychologist 
Phone: 0414640734 
APS Communications team 
Phone: (03) 8662 3300