Golden Gate Bridge suicide barrier up for vote

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A board is scheduled to decide if it should fund a long-debated suicide barrier for San Francisco's iconic Golden Gate Bridge.

The Golden Gate Bridge Board of Directors will vote on Friday whether to approve a $76 million package to build a suicide net.

An approval would be a major victory for families of suicide victims and other supporters of a suicide net. Critics of the idea argue it will not prevent people from finding other ways to take their lives on the majestic span.

Officials say about 1,400 people have plunged to their deaths since the bridge opened in 1937. This total includes a record 46 suicides last year.

With the money, a new suicide barrier could be completed by 2018.

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