Workers at inpatient mental health facilities around Massachusetts sent Gov. Charlie Baker a petition signed by more than 1,100 asking for the installation of metal detectors at seven facilities, according to an article on the Taunton Gazette website.
“We need his intervention,” Jim Durkin, director of legislation for AFSCME Council 93, said. Durkin said metal detectors would not completely solve security challenges at the facilities but they would be an “immediate first step.”
The Department of Mental Health (DMH) is “carefully reviewing and updating its procedures to maintain a safe workplace and treatment environment for staff, patients and visitors,” according to a spokesman for the governor.
Knives and other weapons have been smuggled into DMH facilities and a few months ago a patient used a pencil or pen to stab two workers at Taunton State Hospital.