ANN ARBOR (WWJ) — A local psychologist has teamed up with a U.S. Representative to hold a town hall focused on stress and anxiety since the 2016 Presidential election.
Dr. Carrie Hatcher-Kay says she reached out to Congresswoman Debbie Dingell as her way of coping and taking action.
“People have been quite agitated,” Hatcher-Kay said. “I work with a lot of other therapists as well and all of our clients are experiencing a degree of agitation and unsettledness that is really quite striking, since the election season.”
Hatcher-Kay said the at-capacity room will hold about 400 people, but overflow will also be available in a social hall next door. The event gets underway at 1:30 p.m. Sunday inside of the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Ann Arbor.
The session will start and end with music in what Hatcher-Kay hopes will create an environment for people to gather together and share concerns.
“[We want to] share concerns and thoughts in both directions — both from our leaders and from our community — about what we’re feeling and how we want to act and respond to things that are not normal,” Hatcher-Kay said.
Topics on tap for the town hall meeting include the conflict in Syria, the environment, healthcare and conflicts of interest in the Trump administration.
“As a psychologist I see what’s happening in the world as a situation that the world over — people are experiencing challenges that threaten their capacity to cope — economic challenges and social challenges and education and safety concerns and environmental threats, ways of living, tradition, changes in their access to traditional forms of family, religion and celebration,” Hatcher-Kay said.
Hatcher-Kay said an ideal form of meeting these challenges is social engagement to try to make a difference.
“I’ve been inspired by the election to go into more specific action than ever before,” Hatcher-Kay said. “Talk to your members of Congress — that’s how we can try to make a difference here.”