FOS11 Newsletter, Volume #4, Issue #1January

Welcome | Issues Update | Upcoming Events | Resources | Contact Us | Donate

Families of September 11 is now operating as the For Action Initiative. The web pages on this site are available for informational purposes only. Please visit us at


FOS11 Board Member Tom Rogér
pictured with Mrs. Marielle Thuau,
Judge and Head of the Office of
Victim's Protection for the French
Ministry of Justice. Tom traveled to
Paris this past December to meet with
key representatives to discuss victims'
compensation programs.

It's hard to believe we are into 2005, but here we are. Last year, we succeeded in increasing outreach, attracting new donors and members, and advancing issues of importance to our members. This year we are dedicating ourselves to reaching families who are geographically or emotionally isolated and will remain vigilant in tracking and supporting legislative and policy initiatives that enhance safety, security, and accountability. We are pursuing new partnerships with other social service and advocacy organizations around the world whose goals are sympathetic with ours. Most importantly, we are renewing our commitment to the families and children affected by 9/11 and other similar events and to ensuring that the prevention of and response to terrorism are national priorities.

FOS11 highlights from 2004:

• We were the recipients of two important awards: the Community Champion Award presented by the Civil Justice Foundation for our work on the VCF and the Common Ground Award for our cosponsorship on the "Hope Not Hate" series.
• Our Board members were actively involved in testifying before Congress and helping to secure legislation which begins to address the 9/11 Commission recommendations.

• We were able to address issues concerning graphic images, the use of 9/11 in political campaigns, and school and teacher responsibilities for children affected by 9/11 through our mass mailings to executives, major political parties, and schools nationwide.

• We launched the FOS11 Chat Program, which reaches our members worldwide on topics ranging from healing and resiliency to the 9/11 Commission.

• Our collaborations extended to include the New York State Psychiatric Institute (9/11 Grief Survey), Dickinson College ("Teaching 9/11"), Scholastic Books (curriculum review), 9/11 Public Discourse Project (follow-up to the work of the Commission), the New York State Museum (Ground Zero timeline) and the American Association of Pediatricians (pediatric training programs).

• We re-launched our Children of September 11 webpage to address the needs of parents and caregivers of and advocates for children affected by 9/11.

• We experienced a 44% increase in new membership over 2003 with new members joining us from around the world.

Issues Update

FOS11 Telephone Survey
Thanks to all who have already participated in our first-ever telephone survey, which ends January 14. Families of September 11 commissioned the Survey Center at the University of Connecticut to conduct a telephone survey of our membership to find out what matters to you. Enlisting the assistance of a professional polling and research organization is a reflection of our conviction that the input of our members continues to be vital.

Enroll Now in Upcoming Chat
From images of devastation to stories of families searching for loved ones, the tsunami tragedy may trigger painful memories, bring back fears we had thought we had overcome, or simply remind us of feelings of sadness, helplessness, or despair that we wish we had forgotten. In order to discuss any feelings you may be experiencing in relation to recent events and to share coping strategies, we invite you join Dr. Donna Gaffney and your peers in the 9/11 community for a special one-hour chat discussion on Wednesday, Jan. 19 from 8:00-9:00 PM EST. Titled "Retriggering Trauma: When Events Evoke Emotions," this chat is open to all FOS11 members. Click here to enroll.

9/11 Media Coverage in 2005
Media outlets, including NBC and HBO 2, will be broadcasting several television movies and productions this year based on the events of September 11, 2001. We remind our members that media coverage of 9/11, as news or as a mini-series, might invoke stress symptoms as well as renewed grief reactions in response to viewing. FOS11 is working with networks to ensure that appropriate warnings will precede any graphic imagery. In addition, we will continue to alert our members about films in production as we become aware of them and where possible will supply information on how to contact the producer if you should choose to offer an opinion on any issue surrounding the portrayal of 9/11 in current films, television, or Internet productions. For more information, please read FOS11 President MaryEllen Salamone's full statement.

Family Steering Committee Disbands
Although the Steering Committee as a group will no longer exist, FOS11 will remain a presence in Washington, working for policies that will address the safety and security of our members as well as the broader public. We are proud of the contributions of our Board members, Carie Lemack and Robin Wiener, who worked tirelessly as members of the Committee. Read the Steering Committee's final statement.

Upcoming Events

America's Camp Enrollment -- Ongoing
America's Camp is currently enrolling for its 2005 summer camp located in the heart of the beautiful Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, 2 1/2 hours north of New York City. Session dates are August 17 to August 24. To begin the enrollment process, please visit the America's Camp website and download or print out the applicable forms. If you have questions about completing and submitting enrollment materials, please email or call the camp office at 1-800-548-6295.

Moving Forward/Spouses Surviving -- Thursday, Jan. 20
Hosted by September Space in New York City, this new weekly group for those who lost a partner will begin January 20 and continue through March. Please reserve a seat by contacting Tiffany Goldberg at or by calling 212-563-7570.

9/11 Victim's Memorial Quilt -- Saturday, Jan. 29
Don't miss the final showing of the 9/11 Victim's Memorial Quilt at the DoubleTree Guest Suites in Naples, Florida. Hosted by America’s 9-11 Memorial Quilts and Collier County 9-11 Memorial Task Force, the event is free and open to the public. For lodging information and more event details, please click here.

For more events, please view our calendar.


Tsunami Disaster Relief
Families of September 11 was greatly saddened by the news of the tsunami-generating earthquake off the northwest coast of Sumatra. Members who would like to make donations to humanitarian organizations are encouraged to visit the following websites: U.S. Agency for International Development and Network for Good.

Revisiting Feelings in the Wake of a Tragedy
In this article, FOS11 Advisory Board member Dr. David Schonfeld, a developmental-behavioral pediatrician and Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Child Study at the Yale University School of Medicine, explains how the recent tsunami tragedy and the massive loss of human life associated with the natural disaster can strike close to home for families of 9/11. He includes several warning signs to look out for in family members, and in particular, he highlights how children may react. Read the article.

Resolve To Be Ready In 2005
This year, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is encouraging citizens to make a New Year's resolution that is easy to keep -- creating their own family emergency plan. Families can create a plan that will allow them to know how best to communicate with one another in the event of an emergency. Visit and look for the "Resolve to be Ready" icon. There, you can learn more about emergency preparedness and download a free family emergency plan template to help you get started. For a free brochure, call 1-800-BE-READY. For similar resources, please visit our website's Directory of Preparedness.

Share Your Thoughts about Crisis
New Jersey has created a Governor's Task Force on Mental Health. We are pleased to announce that Families of September 11 President MaryEllen Salamone has been appointed to a committee that will focus specifically on immediate response within local communities to mental health needs in the immediate aftermath of a crisis such as September 11, 2001. FOS11 members in New Jersey can contribute their ideas by visiting and clicking on "Contact" under "Programs that Work." There, you can share your thoughts about what mental health resources and programs were most effective in your communities or what you might like to see implemented in the future.

Port Authority Announces Website to Claim WTC Photos
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is launching a website where images of approximately 8,000 personal photos recovered from the World Trade Center site after September 11, 2001, can be reviewed as part of a process to determine the owners of the photos. Beginning on January 18, family members of 9/11 victims will be able to visit the limited-access, password-protected website. Family members will receive a letter from the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. within the next two weeks providing instructions on how to access the website. Read the press release.

For more resources, please visit the FOS11 website and the Children of September 11 webpage. In addition, submit your comments to our Bulletin Board.

Remember. Honor. Hope.
FOS11 offers a wrist band, in hope for a better future. Click here to learn more.

Contact Us


Become a Member
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By Phone

General information: 212-575-1878

Families of September 11 (FOS11) is a 501(c)(3) organization founded by families of those who died in the September 11 terrorist attacks. Membership is open to anyone affected by the events of September 11, 2001. More than 2,400 people worldwide have chosen to join us.

Families of September 11 is an accredited charity and is a member of the Seal Program, which indicates that our organization has met the 20 Standards for Charity Accountability. For more information about the Standards, please visit the BBB of Metro New York's website at

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