APS statement on civil unrest in Iran

Australian Psychological Society

The Australian Psychological Society is gravely concerned by the ongoing crisis in Iran. The APS, including our 27,000 members around Australia are deeply concerned about the immediate and long-term trauma and psychological impacts on people of all ages, families and communities.

All people have the right to safety. Any violation of human rights can have a severe, adverse effect on psychological and physical health and wellbeing.

The APS supports the Australian Government’s statement in response to the Iranian protests.

We understand that the current crisis is distressing for many in our communities, in particular people who have strong family or personal ties to Iran and the surrounding region. Our thoughts go out to these people and our colleagues in the psychology community in the region.

Many people will find the news and images of the unfolding events extremely upsetting, and for some, old traumas will be reactivated.

This international crisis comes at a time when many people in Australia are already under psychological strain, and we urge anyone struggling to reach out for mental health support.

For anyone experiencing distress, or being impacted by current events, the APS suggests:

  • Reaching out to mental health support services – especially if you are at risk of being re-traumatised
  • Limit media exposure, particularly if it is increasing your distress
  • Talking about your thoughts and feelings with someone you trust – sharing our distress and talking about how we feel with friends, family and trusted community members can be helpful
  • For anyone feeling a sense of powerlessness, taking positive action, like contributing to humanitarian aid efforts, may help
  • Lean on the tools you have for self-care. Allow time for rest, relaxation, exercise and social connection.

Further resources which may be helpful can be found below:

Strategies for coping with tragic events and community violence


Anxiety Disorders


Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder


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