Guard Dog Group launches program to address gender equality


Gender equality and domestic violence are not just social issues in Papua New Guinea; they are also a challenge for business. Frank Sullivan, General Manager of Guard Dog Security Services (part of the Guard Dog Group), explains what PNG’s largest security firm is doing to address the issue.

Guard Dog Airport transfer Source: Guard Dog

Female staff at Guard Dog Security Services. Source: Guard Dog Group

The issues of gender equality and domestic violence are intertwined. It is estimated that two-thirds of all women in Papua New Guinea have suffered from domestic abuse. It results in lost work hours, low productivity and toxic work environments.

According to Guard Dog Security Services General Manager Frank Sullivan, the answers may not be easy to find, but that is not stopping Guard Dog, one of PNG’s largest employers, from trying to make a difference in its own workforce.

‘The Police Unit have already started to conduct presentations to our female staff in both Port Moresby and Lae.’

The company has commenced a program to educate its entire workforce in gender equality and domestic violence. The program includes presentations by police from the Sexual Offences Unit in Port Moresby.

Educational program

Guard Dog security monitor. Source: Guard Dog

Guard Dog security monitor. Source: Guard Dog

‘The Police Unit have already started to conduct presentations to our female staff in both Port Moresby and Lae and then we will look to have this educational program rolled out to all our male employees,’ says Sullivan.

‘The men need to understand and realise that violence against women is not acceptable in any way, shape or form.’

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Sullivan says one aim is to promote strategies that can defuse dangerous situations. Financial pressures and alcohol consumption are two of the most common triggers:

‘When students enroll and undertake our Basic Guard Course, they are asked to look at their social and family responsibilities,’ says Sullivan. ‘It can be as simple as looking at how men have a beer after work.

‘Providing employment opportunities for women is another way to address gender inequality.’

‘The men are told: “When you get paid each fortnight, why not buy two beers instead of six and use the rest of the money to put towards paying for your children’s schooling or uniform?”’

In addition to the workforce education, Guard Dog Group also provides after-hours transport for female staff. Assistance is provided to employees who have been subjected to domestic abuse, including helping them gain access to support services, or the Police.

Employment opportunities

Providing employment opportunities for women is another way to address gender inequality, which is a particular challenge in the male-dominated security industry.

‘The more women we get in the workplace, the more it becomes an open and friendly environment.’

Most of Guard Dog’s security guards are male. Approximately six per cent of the current work force is female but the level of female employment is increasing.

Women are no longer just employed in positions within the office administration environment, they are also being recruited and trained as kennel keepers, dog handlers, and drivers.

A number of corporate clients also prefer female guards to search women and their baggage.

‘We also have opportunities for staff with disabilities.’

‘The more women we get in the workplace, the more it becomes an open and friendly environment,’ says Sullivan. ‘There are a lot of add-ons to having women in the company.’

‘We also have opportunities for staff with disabilities. A number of employees who have disabilities have been working for us for more than a decade.’


  1. Adrian Winnie says

    Tenk yu tru, Guard Dog Security Service management and staff for taking a lead in the industry in addressing gender equality, disability, and social inclusion.

    As someone who grew up in Lae and witnessing GDSS growth and expansion, it makes proud to know that the company is addressing GEDSI in the workplace.

    Wishing you all the best!

  2. Rosemarie Luluai says

    It is a very good initiative done for by the company.i am just wondering if the company would also want us the medical team from the family support centre in pom gen to come in to do an awareness on the long term medical and psychological effects of ongoing exposure to gender based violence.
    I am the Clinical Supervisor of the medical team and my team and i would love to also come to your workplace and talk to your female employees and advocate to the males as well. We are working together with people from SOS/CID and all FSVU in the city.
    I am Rosemarie Luluai and i can be contacted on my mobile # 726 40470 or my email rosaluluai@gmail.

  3. Well done GDSS for addressing gender equality in workplace..

  4. Willie Lape says

    well done Guard Dog Security Service, you have taken the lead to show others in your shoes to follow suit.
    Once again, well done to address the gender inequality in a small way which will make big difference in the long run.

  5. Kanau Iobuna says

    Thank you Guard Dog for driving the policy on gender equality and the integration of disability into your workforce. Workers desire decent work and employers require productive work. This duality is complimentary to each other through the existence of good faith employment relationships at the workplace. We need to drive and promote more on social justice at the workplace to create a culture of decent work in the country. All companies in the middle bracket in the country should follow your example. Thanks once again for going leaps and bound in your drive in promoting this policy at your level and I just hope others at your level and below will follow suit.

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