Statement by Dr. Norman B. Anderson, CEO American Psychological Association

The American Psychological Association is pleased to be working with Nickelodeon Productions and the Nick News team to provide educational and supplemental materials to their 9/11 anniversary broadcast.

The September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks were a shared American experience, and one that played out in real time. Most Americans recall how they learned about the events of that day, and for many, the tragic events of 9/11 were a jolt to their equilibrium. The good news is that most people around the country – adults as well as children – regained their emotional footing reasonably quickly. Nonetheless, as the Nick News broadcast shows, children who were very young when the attacks occurred may today be confused about what happened and why, and the events that followed.

Immediately after the attacks, Americans pulled together as never before to rebuild and heal. In the 10 years since, we have also learned more about mental health, resilience and the power of community.

Psychologists, especially those with specialized skills in coping with traumatic events and trauma recovery, will be working in communities across the country to help people who might be affected by the renewed focus on 9/11 as we mark the 10th anniversary.

I encourage parents and other caregivers to watch this Nick News broadcast with the children in your lives. Give your kids space to express their anxiety, should they have any, and be prepared to answer their questions. The curriculum and other materials produced by Nickelodeon and APA can help you do so.

Norman B. Anderson, PhD
American Psychological Association