November 8, 2001
Survey Reveals Many Americans
Suffering Physical and Emotional Reaction To Terrorist Threat
Confidence in Government Preparedness Shown
- Americans across the country are being physically and emotionally
impacted by the attacks of Sept. 11 with many feeling depressed as well as
having difficulty sleeping, according to a survey just released by E-Poll(R)
( http://www.epoll.com/ ), a leading market research company. The results
also show that Americans do not believe the U.S. government is prepared to
The E-Poll research finds that 22 percent of Americans report experiencing
symptoms of depression since the attacks of Sept. 11 and 17 percent saying
insomnia has been a recurring problem. Women seem to be impacted more than
men with 31 percent of all women experiencing symptoms of depression and 23
percent having problems sleeping.
As for confidence in government preparedness, 70 percent believe the U.S. is
not prepared to safeguard the mail; 52 percent felt the U.S. cannot
adequately protect the water supplies and 49 percent do not think the
government can adequately detect anthrax or biochemical attacks. Overall,
only 32 percent feel that current U.S. policies are adequate to protect the
population against bio-terrorism.
Fear of Being Targeted. Although many Americans fear they may be victimized,
women are feeling more threatened than men. More than 63 percent of women
surveyed feel somewhat or very concerned about being a victim of a terrorist
attack compared to 46 percent of men.
Protective Measures. The U.S. population is primarily doing two things to
safeguard themselves against bio-terrorism: educating themselves on
potential symptoms (48 percent) and examining their mail more carefully (46
percent). Few Americans have taken more extreme measures such as purchasing
antibiotics (3 percent), creating sealed-off safe rooms (3 percent), or
buying gas masks (2 percent).
Impacting Daily Lives. The survey shows that people are generally carrying
on with their lives. The biggest impact on Americans' daily routine is a
marked increase in watching TV news. Sixty percent of those surveyed said
they are watching more news updates. Thirty-three percent are spending more
time with loved ones and only 3 percent report drinking more alcohol.
Methodology: The E-Poll survey of 482 respondents was conducted October 24 -
31, 2001. A representative group of adults 18+ was randomly selected from
the E-Poll online panel. Results for gender were weighted to reflect the
2000 U.S. Census data. At a 95 percent confidence level, a sample error of
+/- 5 percent is assumed for statistics based on the total sample of 482
respondents. Statistics based on sub-samples of the respondents are more
sensitive to sampling error.