Brigantine resident and former Rhode Island U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy will be the keynote speaker at an event today addressing the emotional consequences of Hurricane Sandy.

The symposium, titled “Superstorm Sandy: The Emotional Aftermath,” is scheduled for 10 a.m. until noon in the Campus Center Theater at The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey in Galloway Township. The symposium is free and open to the public.

The panel includes several mental health experts speaking on “the emotional health problems that arose from Hurricane Sandy and the best way to ensure access to critical care,” according to a statement from sponsor PerformCare.

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Among the scheduled panelists are Jeffrey J. Guenzel, deputy commissioner for programs and services at the New Jersey Department of Children and Families; Adrienne Fessler-Belli, director of the Disaster and Terrorism Branch, Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services at the New Jersey Department of Human Services; and Marlene Lao-Collins, the executive director of Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Trenton.

Kennedy has been a vocal mental health advocate, having co-sponsored the federal Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008.

No panelists are being paid for their appearance, and PerformCare’s parent company will give a donation in Kennedy’s name to a charity of his choice.

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