Rail

Brightline uses haircuts to promote rail safety, mental health education

Posted on January 28, 2020

Brightline, the Fla.-based passenger rail service, launched a mobile barbershop to visit neighborhoods that live along the tracks and promote safety and mental health. Brightline

Fla.’s Brightline unveiled the new Brightline Buzz Boxx in Palm Beach County, the centerpiece of a safety initiative driven by the intercity rail system in partnership with 211 Helpline and Operation Lifesaver. The mobile barbershop is designed to engage with communities that interact along the rail corridor and educate them on rail safety and mental health.

In coordination with several Palm Beach County organizations and law enforcement, dozens of residents received free haircuts at Brightline's West Palm Beach Station and Lake Worth Beach. Prior to their haircuts, all signed the Operation Lifesaver Rail Safety Pledge promising to stay safe around railroad tracks. During their “buzz's”, residents were also able to connect with the barber and engage in meaningful conversations. This year, Brightline plans on over 60 Buzz Boxx activations across South Florida.

Since 2017, rail fatalities in Florida have gone down but suicides by rail have gone up, with 75% of incidents with Brightline a result of suicide or drugs.
Brightline
Since 2017, rail fatalities in Florida have gone down but suicides by rail have gone up, with 75% of incidents with Brightline a result of suicide or drugs.Brightline
Since 2017, rail fatalities in Florida have gone down but suicides by rail have gone up, with 75% of incidents with Brightline a result of suicide or drugs. Suicides are up in every demographic and age group and it is the second leading cause of death between ages 15 to 24.

The Buzz Boxx is a state-of-the-art mobile barbershop designed to visit the heart of neighborhoods that live along the tracks and promote safety and mental health. Brightline is working with homeless organizations, youth centers, and schools educating on rail safety awareness and providing resources for mental illness. Buzz Boxx barbers have been provided mentorship training so that they know how to best address the youth one-on-one and provide encouragement and follow up needed to help them succeed.

Buzz Boxx barbers have been provided mentorship training so that they know how to best address the youth one-on-on. Brightline

“Haircuts are a unique way to engage communities and make a personal one-on-one connection with individuals while sitting in the barber's chair,” said Patrick Goddard, president of Brightline. “When you look better, you feel better and we know that basic services like this make a big difference in someone getting back on their feet.”

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