Councilors Ed Flynn, District 2, and Kim Janey, City Council President, requested a hearing to discuss adding security measures to high-rise garages in the City of Boston amidst recent suicides and attempts.
Over the Christmas holidays, a mother and her two children fell to their death at Northeastern University’s Renaissance garage in a suspected murder-suicide. This marked the third, fourth, and fifth deaths from the garage in recent years, sparking concern over safety measures that could be taken to prevent this.
“These tragic incidents call attention to security measures at high-rise garages,”said Councilor Flynn, “as well as the lack of measure at garages that prevent people in distress from jumping.”
He pointed out that most bridges and tall buildings have barriers or fencing to prevent suicide attempts, but parking garages remain largely accessible to the public.
His suggestion for addressing the issue involved fencing and landscaping to block open landing areas, as well as signage that directs those feeling suicidal to call the suicide prevention hotline, cameras installed on top levels, and educating staff on suicide prevention measures.
Last month, Northeastern University implemented similar changes to the Renaissance garage following the incident that occurred on Christmas Day. Councilor Flynn also addressed the need to open the conversation up about access to mental health services as a further preventative measure for such incidents.