TAUNTON — Gubernatorial candidate and Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley reaffirmed her support for keeping Taunton State Hospital open during a campaign stop at the mental health care facility on Tuesday.
Coakley met with administrators, nurses, social workers, and residents, calling the facility “a beautiful campus” that she would work to keep open as governor. Coakley’s stance on Taunton State Hospital directly contradicts the efforts of Gov. Deval Patrick, her fellow Democrat who worked to close it down and shift all 169 beds to a new state hospital now operating in Worcester, before the Legislature saved 45 beds that remain at the Taunton facility.
“I think it has great potential,” said Coakley, when asked of her plans for Taunton State. “I think a good start is keeping Taunton open and committing to providing additional beds there, but also additional kinds of care, and I think that model could be something we look at in the rest of the commonwealth. ... We have some work to do on this.”