Oil Search Managing Director Peter Botten supports the need for leadership to address family and sexual violence FSV in the workplace
Peter Botten Speech v2.jpg

The Business Coalition for Women (BCFW) hosted a forum at APEC Haus to launch their new Executive Women in Leadership program. The forum provided an opportunity for Peter Botten to speak about Oil Search’s support for Bel isi PNG and the organisation wide commitment to addressing family and sexual violence (FSV) through the workforce.

The story Peter told was deeply personal and recounted the many times he has witnessed the consequences of violence over 26 years working in PNG.

Peter encouraged all leaders to implement a workplace policy to assist with changing attitudes to violence, as well as subscribing to Bel isi PNG to offer support services to staff. Oil Search has implemented a workplace Domestic Violence policy and provides project management services free of charge to Bel isi PNG.

BCFW is a key partner in Bel isi PNG and offers support to organisations in addressing FSV through assistance with policy development and training FSV contact officers in the workplace. With funding from Bel isi PNG, BCFW has also designed and delivered gender sensitisation and responder training to G4S who operate the Meri Seif Line.

For more information on subscribing to Bel isi PNG please contact info@belisipng.org.pg.

For more information on Business Coalition for Women visit their website http://www.pngbcfw.org/.

Omar Dalagan
Human Right Defenders Association and National Capital District Commission Peaceful Demonstration

The theme for the recent peaceful demonstration was “No Compensation, we demand justice for our women and girls”.

The Papua New Guinea Constitution sets down fundamental rights of all people including:

  • The right to life;

  • The right to protection from the law; and

  • The right to freedom from inhuman treatment.

Hundreds of walkers joined together peacefully in support of these rights. They were met on the steps of parliament by Deputy Prime Minister, Steven Davis who affirmed that the government is serious about human rights, and men and women must be equal in rights.

Bel isi PNG partners joined the peaceful march as we are passionate about addressing and raising awareness on human rights issues including family sexual violence and the protection of the rights of women and girls.

National Capital District Commission Family Sexual Violence Action Committee Manager Ruth Beriso, who coordinated the involvement of Bel isi PNG partners, stood on the steps of parliament alongside the Human Rights Defenders Association on behalf of all women and girls.

Omar Dalagan
Thai cave rescue divers praise PNG at Bel isi PNG leadership forum

Two genuine Aussie heroes have thrown their weight behind Bel Isi PNG, Port Moresby’s ground-breaking public-private partnership, to tackle family and sexual violence (FSV).

Named the 2019 Australians of the Year following their role in rescuing 12 Thai boys and their soccer coach from a flooded cave in 2018, Dr Richard Harris and Dr Craig Challen took part in Bel Isi PNG’s second annual Leadership Forum held recently at the iconic APEC Haus.

In town thanks to Oil Search – an enthusiastic supporter of Bel is PNG– they were joined by many prominent figures from government, business, and civil society.

All guests heard National Capital District (NCD) Governor Powes Parkop congratulate partners on a hugely successful first year which saw the establishment of a safe house funded by BSP and a case management centre supported by Steamships. Oil Search Foundation provides all project management, and the Australian Government (in partnership with the Government of Papua New Guinea through its Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development Program) provides core funding support. The local NGO, Femili PNG operates core services.

Bel isi PNG has already assisted over 200 FSV survivors, including children, to access services and has provided around 2000 people with information on where to find help through employee awareness sessions. The Governor said that while progress is very promising, challenges are daunting:

“Yes we have reduced FSV but ultimately we need to stop it,” he said. “We need to think about how we can change mindsets and behaviour, and in doing so, we need to think outside the box.”

The Governor’s words set the tone for the forum that followed – an interactive set of round-table discussions where participants shared ideas on how to protect and empower women. They put forward action plans on engaging men in preventing and addressing violence, leading change, overcoming the many constraints faced at work including every day sexism, developing corporate policies and advocating for change.

Oil Search Foundation’s Executive Director, Stephanie Copus-Campbell, described the discussions as extremely productive.

“It’s events like these that galvanize the private sector in partnership with government and civil society to drive change. As leaders and influencers within the community, we have a responsibility to raise awareness of the challenges and come up with practical solutions to address the problems.”

‘With the majority of women in Papua New Guinea having suffered from some form of physical or sexual violence, changing mindsets is a major priority – and we’re not going to do that without working in partnership,” Copus-Campbell said.

Partners established the leadership forum to bring together leading voices and perspectives on the many facets of FSV. These voices included Police Minister Bryan Kramer, who emphasised the need for effective, sensitive and well-trained police; ANZ Chair Winifred Kamit, who promoted the need for effective leadership as well as developing the capacity of local NGOs to respond; Minister-Counsellor & Consul-General for Australia, Jo Stevens, who expressed the need to prioritise working with local service providers which have family and sexual violence policies and procedures in place; and CEO of the Brian Bell Group, Cameron Mackellar, along with Bank of South Pacific’s Head of Support Services, Alicia Sahib, who both demonstrated how active leadership results in more employees seeking support and in return able to perform better at work.

Participants also heard from male champions of change including NCD Deputy Governor and Motu Koita Assembly Chairman Dadi Toka Jr, Digicel CEO Colin Stone and Ganjiki Wayne representing the Oil Search Board on the positive role men can play in combatting FSV. The group agreed there are many PNG men who are actively driving positive change and inspiring other men and boys on why respect for women is good for everyone.

The two Australians of the Year, also male champions for change, congratulated the countless every day heroes who devote their lives to a safer PNG. Both highlighted the essential role of leadership and partnership in addressing the challenges and maximising the opportunities for change.

Omar Dalagan
National Capital District support for Family Sexual Violence services
IMG_0909.jpg

While family and sexual violence is still a massive problem in Port Moresby, we now have more support services. Survivors have more options of the type of service they need, such as seeking medical help from a doctor, a court protection order from a legal officer, counselling and safe accommodation.

What the survivors of violence now need is a map of these different services, to smoothly connect them. A survivor cannot always be expected to navigate their way through the complex maze of FSV services– or, for that matter, even know they exist.

The National Capital District Gender Based Violence / Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee Secretariat coordinates referrals with the different services available in the city for survivors of family and sexual violence . Run by the National Capital District Commission, under the strong leadership of Governor Powes Parkop, this body provides a step by step road map of Port Moresby’s different FSV service providers – such as the Royal PNG Constabulary- Family Sexual Violence Units, State Child protection officers, the Family Support Centre, the Public Prosecutor’s Office, the Public Solicitors Office, safe houses and case management services.

Thanks to NCDC and partners, those who have experienced violence will know where to lodge a formal complaint, apply for a court order, access appropriate and timely medical support and sort counselling. Through organisations like Bel isi PNG survivors will also have access to case management and safe accommodation.

We commend the NCDC on being champions for change and helping survivors to seek the help they need.

Omar Dalagan
A Human Resource reflection
 
 

Recognising the need to adopt a formal Family and Sexual Violence (FSV) framework, Pansy Taueni-Sialis, HR Manager for Oil Search Ltd further details how Bel Isi has assisted Oil Search in supporting employees who are FSV survivors of FSV.

What was the driving motivation for Oil Search Foundation (OSF) and Oil Search Limited (OSL) to become a subscriber of Bel isi PNG?

Family and sexual violence (FSV) is a very serious issue that Oil Search recognised and wanted to address. For us, it was about wanting to make a difference. Not only within the workplace but within the community at large.

How has Bel Isi PNG been able to assist the employees of Oil Search?

Prior to being a subscriber to the Bel Isi PNG program our approach to assisting survivors of FSV was a little haphazard. We certainly had a framework in place, but it was not as simple and integrated as the Bel isi PNG framework. Since becoming a subscriber, Bel Isi PNG has enabled us to effectively assist our staff members straight away by providing a one stop solution to an integrated network of legal, case management, health and infrastructure including a safe house.

How has Bel Isi PNG been able to assist you as HR Manager of Oil Search?

Bel Isi PNG’s logo is underpinned by the motto “Better lives. Better business.” Oil Search wanted to be part of an initiative which supported this mandate; recognizing the two go hand in hand.

People understand the damages FSV can have to people’s lives but many, including Oil Search, were surprised to receive the data concerning the affects and damages FSV can have on business. Indeed, FSV can have drastic impacts on a company’s bottom line with absenteeism, reduction of productivity and work safety accidents.

Since becoming a subscriber, we have seen first-hand the difference this initiative has had on our employee’s lives. One of the most reassuring aspects is seeing the employee still at work, which provides that security and economic empowerment to the individual and puts them in a position whereby they do not have to rely financially on others.

To change behaviours, one must break the ‘cycle’. How does this apply to Oil Search and being a subscriber of Bel Isi PNG?

In situations of FSV, return to work and employee retention is at risk. We have seen in the media the worst cases where people lost their lives because of violence at home. This is unacceptable and we knew as an organisation we had to do something to help our employees and to help break the cycle.

Not being able to access the right services and resources continues to contribute to the problem. For us, subscribing to Bel Isi PNG was about providing options to staff to help support them to break this cycle.

What are the misconceptions surrounding FSV?

There is a natural bias which assumes woman from low socio-economic backgrounds are the ones predominately experiencing FSV. This is an incorrect assumption. FSV affects all levels of society and also all genders. Indeed, females experience a higher incidence of it occurring, however males too are subjected and thus both genders need the support systems in place.

Does Bel isi PNG fit into the policy framework of Oil Search in terms of dealing with FSV or DV?

OSL does not tolerate any form of violence. This is why we are a driving force behind supporting those who have been exposed to violence as well as providing the tools for prevention.

We are in the process of operationalizing a policy which will more formally address these tools for prevention plus provide survivors with access to resources to further assist them. For example, transport reimbursements for those who need to access support services such as the police station, hospitals etc and who may not have the available funds to do so. Furthermore, and most importantly, the policy includes access to leave for FSV situations.

How would you encourage other organizations to act/respond?

For organizations who are still on the fence on whether they should be a subscriber, we’ve seen it work first hand.

Omar Dalagan
G4S Meri Seif Line - committed to sensitively assist survivors
 
IMG-9716.jpg
 

G4S continues to provide an essential emergency transport service for families experiencing family and sexual violence as championed by Managing Director, Mr Kerry McNamara. All Meri Seif Line operators and responders are trained in responding sensitively to survivors via a training package developed by the Business Coalition for Women (BCFW). The following interview with Evonne Kennedy outlines the services offered by the Meri Seif Line and the training provided to G4S staff.

What is the G4S Meri Seif Line?

The Meri Seif Line can be contacted on 7222-1234, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – please save this number.

The G4S Meri Seif Line is a hotline and service that has been operating in Port Moresby and is also now included as part of Bel isi PNG’s coordinated and structured referral pathways - providing a safe transport option for survivors of Family & Sexual Violence (FSV). Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, an FSV survivor can call the hotline and request a pick up by a G4S response team who will then safely remove the survivor and take them to a ‘safe’ place. This can be a friend or family member’s home, the hospital, the police station, a safe house etc. The location is at the survivor’s discretion.

Specialised training for first responders of the Meri Seif Line?

Recognising that G4S Meri Seif Line responders are the first point of contacts with survivors in rendering assistance to the survivor, collectively the Bel isi PNG partners acknowledged the importance of training and skilling the G4S staff as first line responders. As a key partner of Bel isi PNG and having already had previous experience in developing training and modules around access to justice for survivors of FSV, BCFW was able to take the lead in developing and implementing the Train the Trainer (TOT) Manual.

What does the TOT involve?

Initially there was not a clear process in terms of how the G4S team should respond to and sensitively assist survivors. BCFW worked with the G4S Human Resources department and head trainer to develop the TOT Manual. Care was taken to ensure the training complemented G4S code of conduct and company policies.

The training is concentrated around educating the G4S responders on FSV, the laws and the appropriate response. The training has been framed in the context of human rights and works towards ‘unpacking’ the power and social norms around violence. The training also covers the referral pathways depending on the time of day or night the call is received, plus the importance of timely medical attention if there has been an incident of sexual assault.

Whilst BCFW is responsible for the development and initial implementation of the manual, to ensure its sustainability the training will be managed by G4S with BCFW co-facilitating components in the future.

What is meant by ‘unpacking’ the power?

PNG has a deeply ingrained culture of violence. One of our biggest issues is the level of acceptability towards violence which is a lot higher here than other countries which have instilled more sensitisation around eradicating violence from social norms.

With this in mind, our challenge is about ‘unpacking power’ and looking more closely at all types and levels of violence in an effort to gradually work towards severing the cycle.

Why was a train the Trainer model selected?

We need to approach the sustainability of the training from both a company and employee level. From a company level, it is critical that the training is embedded into the company policy and induction processes to encourage and facilitate a continuation of practice.

From an employee level it must be reinforced that FSV is not just a family issue, it is against the law. This will be our biggest challenge as we first need to break through some of the myths which surround FSV. It’s about recognising this is a social issue and that beliefs and prejudices will not change overnight but with education and continual awareness there is hope. Various platforms, for example, lunch and learn and information sessions within the company will help to continually educate the employees on FSV.

Does BCFW have the capacity to develop training manuals for other companies?

Yes. We currently have other companies who have engaged us to provide services, resources and support regarding FSV. This is very comforting as it shows the commitment the private and public sector have to combatting this issue.

For more information on the training services provided please visit their website http://www.pngbcfw.org/.

Meri Seif Line

The Meri Seif Line can be contacted on 7222-1234, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Omar Dalagan
Family sexual violence workplace Policy – why it’s important and lessons learned
 
IMG_20190131_081259_resized_20190131_082408493.jpg
 

Having committed themselves to addressing family and sexual violence (FSV) within the workplace, the Bank of South Pacific (BSP) recognized the need to complement and support Bel isi PNG services through development and implementation of a new Group FSV Company Policy. BSP has now launched its Group FSV Company Policy in the hope of creating a safe environment for its employees to come forward and seek help. This policy will first be rolled out in PNG followed by progressively rolling it across seven other countries in which BSP operates in. Alicia Sahib, Head of Support Services for BSP in Papua New Guinea explains.

Why is it important for BSP to have an FSV policy? What are the benefits?

BSP, like many organisations within PNG, has a sizeable workforce and with that comes a variety of different upbringings, cultures and backgrounds. In having the FSV policy, BSP is working towards creating a safe organisational climate whereby staff who are survivors feel safe in coming forward and seeking help without judgement.

The FSV Policy provides a clear practical guide for managers, employees, survivors and perpetrators on the organisation’s stance on violence, how to identify FSV and what support BSP can offer. The procedures and responsibilities are outlined and provide explicit guidance on what assistance can be provided by BSP to an employee.

Why is it important for BSP to have policy as well as subscribe to Bel isi PNG?

Subscribing to Bel isi PNG provides members and their employees a network of service providers who are specialized in assisting survivors of FSV, which provides confidence to employees to seek help when they need it. A company FSV policy can make it clear that organisations do not accept violence and are making it easier for their employees to understand and access help when they need it. Company policies help set organisational culture and we hope that it will also help to change community attitudes more broadly towards violence.

What are the practical steps involved in getting a work place policy?

The FSV Policy was formulated through consulting various legal and human resource departments to ensure it could be applied in different legislations as well as complemented or worked in conjunction with other existing country specific BSP policies.

We also consulted other organisations and people to hear what worked for them. We conducted qualitative and quantitative research that enabled us to develop a very practical policy which is easy to follow by all parties.

The Business Coalition for Women has been consulted from the start for general guidance on workplace policy and provided a technical review of the document.

[Editor recommends organisations seek support from the Business Coalition for Women who offer a model policy, implementation support and key contacts training.]

What are some key lessons in drafting a FSV Policy?

The key challenges we had in mind when drafting the policy were about who should own it, how it should be implemented and how to embed it in our organisation. While policy implementation is straight forward, creating the knowledge base internally on how to provide support is essential.

Our policy addresses the importance of having an internal governing and reporting body (FSV Action Committee) which will be established in each country and will report directly to the Country Manager or CEO. It will be supported by a network of contact points depending on the size and geographical location of the workforce in each country. Constant and consistent messaging through modelling – ensuring that both women and men are contact points, awareness programmes, newsletters and bite size communication pieces is part of the success matrix in embedding the policy.

What are some key challenges you’ve already identified?

The initial challenge will be ensuring that Country Managers or CEOs of the businesses have an interest in the policy and thus ‘owns’ it. Having support from the top is essential.

Another challenge concerns the repercussions for perpetrators depending on their position within the organisation. The policy applies to every employee, no matter where they sit in the hierarchy. To ensure this blanket approach is employed, the governing body will be reviewing and assessing cases and making recommendations relating to perpetrators according to procedures and internal policies.

What advice would you give to an organisation that is interested in subscribing to Bel isi PNG and implementing their own policy?

A company interested in subscribing to Bel isi PNG must first be aware of and understand the impacts of FSV in the workplace and be prepared to take ownership of the issue. It’s not about simply paying a subscription and ticking a ‘box’, rather there has to be engagement and ownership from leadership within the organisation itself. The CEO has to take a personal interest, as it is an issue which affects everyone. No matter what job title a survivor has, no matter how much the survivor earns or where the survivor lives, the problem exists in every level of society around us.

By subscribing there is an acknowledgement that family and sexual violence negatively impacts on your business, your staff and customers. Subscribing to Bel isi PNG will ensure that your staff will be supported to access the help available that they need. But my advice is that we need to do more. It’s about having the right policies in place so that employees know how to approach the situation and the support they have. It’s embedding a culture that provides for a safer and more supportive organisation climate to prevent and reduce the incidences and effects of FSV in the workplace.

Omar Dalagan
Update from IFC on the Solomon Islands Waka Mere initiative to promote gender equality in the private sector.
 
 

The Waka Mere Commitment to Action is a two year initiative to promote gender equality in the private sector in the Solomon Islands. The report produced by IFS is available here and contains good information for organisations looking to improve gender equality and address FSV.

The work under the Wake Mere Commitment to Action is supported by the governments of Australia and New Zealand. Under the Pacific Partnership, Australia, New Zealand and IFC are working together to stimulate private sector investment, promote sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty in the Pacific.

Omar Dalagan
Public and private sector unite to help protect women
 
 

March 8th was International Women Day – a time to celebrate our mothers, sisters, daughters, grandmothers and aunts and reflect on what we can all do to protect their rights.

In Papua New Guinea, like many other parts of the world, much remains to be done. In PNG some studies suggest that 2 out of 3 women and many men will experience some form of physical or sexual abuse in their lifetime.

But the good news is that progress is being made by different partners. Building on many years of work by a range of women’s organisations including the Business Coalition for Women, non-government organisations, donor partners and the PNG Government, the private sector is stepping up to take a leadership role in addressing this development challenge.

Nine major organisations have signed onto the Bel isi PNG (peaceful PNG) initiative to date: ANZ, Australian High Commission, Bank of South Pacific (BSP), Brian Bell, Digicel, ExxonMobil, Oil Search, Steamships Company and the World Bank Group. Under the scheme, each pays a fee that provides expert advice and tools on promoting awareness and actions against domestic violence while at the same time enabling staff to access care and support.

Support may involve legal advice, or medical assistance; it may involve relationship counselling or a police intervention. Sometimes it will mean applying for a protection order, devising a security plan or taking refuge in a safe house. If a person goes to Bel isi PNG a case worker will listen to their situation, work with them on the options available, and then support them through a plan of action that works for them and keeps them safe.

“I am so amazed with this fantastic service,” says an HR manager at one of the subscribing businesses, after Bel isi PNG provided a safe house and other “invaluable assistance” to a “shy colleague who has kept her situation to herself for goodness knows how long … It is definitely making a difference to us.”

And it may be making a difference for employers as well. Violence against women is after all, not just a social issue, it has long been a big problem for business.

Robin Fleming, BSP’s Group Chief Executive Officer, and Co-Chair of the Bel isi PNG Steering Committee said that ‘BSP remains committed to providing a safer and more supportive organisational climate for survivors of family and sexual violence’.

‘We acknowledge that the impacts of family and sexual violence are linked to the productivity and performance of our staff and that staff genuinely struggle to survive and continue providing for their families. We therefore strongly feel that it is our moral obligation to provide support to our staff who are survivors of family and sexual violence and based on this belief is where our search for a solution started some years ago. We have now also seen the positive impacts of the assistance provided by Bel isi PNG. Our staff are able to return to work without the burden of having to deal with issues in order to protect themselves and their families from further violence and abuse.’

Very much a product of private sector initiative, Bel isi PNG began with donations – a building from Bank of South Pacific to be used as a safe house and an office space from Steamships Trading Co for a case management centre. Oil Search Foundation is providing, at no cost all program management. G4S is offering 24-hour free transport from unsafe locations, while Brian Bell, a local homeware store, provided furniture and cleaning supplies and PNG Power all of the electricity.

The project would not be possible without strong public-sector support, such as that provided by the Australian Government’s Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development program, the National Capital District Commission and the Governor of the National Capital District, Femili PNG, Business Coalition for Women and the Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee.

While the initiative is providing case management and safe house services, other work includes leadership forums with company executive leaders to help change attitudes to family and sexual violence and support capacity building with and by the broader sector agencies. Not only do companies address a business interest, they contribute directly to addressing family and sexual violence for the entire community.

In short, it’s a prime example of partnership.

As Peter Botten, Managing Director of Oil Search, recently put it, Bel isi PNG is “proof that when governments and NGOs can leverage private sector support the outcomes are better for everyone. I believe what we are doing here in PNG is a model for others.ng up to take a leadership role in addressing this development challenge.

Nine major organisations have signed onto the Bel isi PNG (peaceful PNG) initiative to date: ANZ, Australian High Commission, Bank of South Pacific (BSP), Brian Bell, Digicel, ExxonMobil, Oil Search, Steamships Company and the World Bank Group. Under the scheme, each pays a fee that provides expert advice and tools on promoting awareness and actions against domestic violence while at the same time enabling staff to access care and support.

Support may involve legal advice, or medical assistance; it may involve relationship counselling or a police intervention. Sometimes it will mean applying for a protection order, devising a security plan or taking refuge in a safe house. If a person goes to Bel isi PNG a case worker will listen to their situation, work with them on the options available, and then support them through a plan of action that works for them and keeps them safe.

“I am so amazed with this fantastic service,” says an HR manager at one of the subscribing businesses, after Bel isi PNG provided a safe house and other “invaluable assistance” to a “shy colleague who has kept her situation to herself for goodness knows how long … It is definitely making a difference to us.”

And it may be making a difference for employers as well. Violence against women is after all, not just a social issue, it has long been a big problem for business.

Robin Fleming, BSP’s Group Chief Executive Officer, and Co-Chair of the Bel isi PNG Steering Committee said that ‘BSP remains committed to providing a safer and more supportive organisational climate for survivors of family and sexual violence’.

‘We feel strongly feel that it is our moral obligation to provide support to those who are survivors of family and sexual violence and based on this belief is where our search for a solution started some years ago. We have now also seen the positive impacts of the assistance provided by Bel isi PNG. Our staff can return to work without the burden of having to deal with issues to protect themselves and their families from further violence and abuse’

Very much a product of private sector initiative, Bel isi PNG began with donations – a building from Bank of South Pacific to be used as a safe house and an office space from Steamships Trading Co for a case management centre. Oil Search Foundation is providing, at no cost all program management. G4S is offering 24-hour free transport from unsafe locations, while Brian Bell, a local homeware store, provided furniture and cleaning supplies and PNG Power all of the electricity.

The project would not be possible without strong public-sector support, such as that provided by the Australian Government’s Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development program, the National Capital District Commission and the Governor of the National Capital District, Femili PNG, Business Coalition for Women and the Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee.

While the initiative is providing case management and safe house services, other work includes leadership forums with company executive leaders to help change attitudes to family and sexual violence and support capacity building with and by the broader sector agencies. Not only do companies address a business interest, they contribute directly to addressing family and sexual violence for the entire community.

In short, it’s a prime example of partnership.

As Peter Botten, Managing Director of Oil Search, recently put it, Bel isi PNG is “proof that when governments and NGOs can leverage private sector support the outcomes are better for everyone. I believe what we are doing here in PNG is a model for others.

Omar Dalagan
Enough is enough
 
2018_EVAW_Walk.jpg
 

Although PNG has made a lot of progress towards resolving issues of domestic violence, there is still more to be done.

Encouragingly, the issue is no longer just a donor driven conversation, rather PNG’s rise of civil society has played a major part in growing the movement towards change.

Coined “enough is a enough” – many high profile members including the Police Commissioner and the Commander of the PNG Defence Force have stepped up to ensure this powerful motto continually reverberates through the veins of PNG life.

In support, the government, donors and private entities have also pledged their commitment to encourage change.

Although these coordinated prevention and advocacy efforts have lead to new laws being passed and support services established, Stephanie Copus Campbell, Executive Director of Oil Search Foundation, further details the need to carry on leveraging this collective interest to continue the provision of support services and advocating for change. Read more.

This project is supported by the Australian Government in partnership with the Government of Papua New Guinea through Pacific Women. Bel isi PNG brings the private sector, civil society and government together to provide services and inspire leadership to address family and sexual violence in Port Moresby.

To learn more about the Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee’s work, particularly to strengthen provincial FSV Action Committees and to strengthen referral pathways for survivors read more at: http://www.cimcpng.net/index.php/committees/fsvac

For more information about the work of Pacific Women and all the local organisations being supported in Papua New Guinea is available in the Papua New Guinea Performance Report: https://pacificwomen.org/key-pacific-women-resources/pacific-women-papua-new-guinea-performance-report-2017-2018/

Omar Dalagan
Workplace Awareness Sessions
 
 
 
 

Over 1,000 employees of subscribing companies in National Capital District have attended a Bel isi PNG employee awareness session.

These sessions, delivered in collaboration with Business Coalition for Women cover important information, including:

  • What is Family and Sexual Violence

  • Types of abuse

  • Why your company has subscribed

  • What services are available and what is case management

  • Important information on services

  • Introduction to the Meri Seif Line operated by G4S

  • Support for men

  • Key contacts and tool kits

We have some learnings to share from these initial sessions:

  • Being able to link the services to your organisations policy framework and existing services is very helpful for staff

  • Early identification of key contact personnel is important for staff to access additional information or seek assistance / feel supported within the workplace

The sessions themselves are most impactful if:

  • Supervisors and managers attend a session to hear the same messaging and are encouraged to lead on support for staff

  • As many staff as possible are enabled to attend, including both men and women

  • Time and space for staff to feel confident to ask questions is important

  • Time available following the session should be made available for staff who are not confident to ask questions in the formal session

The feedback from attending employees has been very positive with many staff asking for the same information to be shared with their communities. We will seek further feedback to continually improve.

Please contact Bel isi PNG on how to organise a briefing for your organisation.


 
Omar Dalagan
Toolbox 2: How can I help someone experiencing family and sexual violence?
 
Banner_5.png
 
 
 

Supporting someone who is experiencing family and sexual violence can be frightening, stressful and sometimes frustrating.

If you want to talk to someone about family and sexual violence:

  • Wait until they are alone and it is safe to speak.

  • Let them know that you are worried about them.

  • Ask if they are okay. If appropriate, ask if their children are okay.

  • Do not push them to talk, say you are here if they want to talk.

  • Do not try to offer counselling.

  • Recommend they contact one of the key support services (see below).

If someone tells you about a problem with family and sexual violence your response is very important and can make a real difference.
If the person feels supported by the people around them, they are more likely to seek help. Remember to:

  • Tell them you believe them.

  • Let them know that it is not their fault.

  • Avoid offering counselling. Do not give your own solutions, but recommend they contact one of the key support services
    (see below).

Understand that the decision to access help is theirs and your role is to support them in this process.

Look after yourself first

Helping someone else respond to family and sexual violence can be very stressful. Be sure to look after yourself and talk to someone if you need support or advice.

Act Now

You can talk to a counsellor on the 1-Tok Kaunselin Helpim Lain 7150 8000 or call the Bel isi PNG Case Management Centre (Operated by Femili PNG) by phoning 7055 4401.

 
Toolbox 1: How do you recognize signs of Family and Sexual Violence?
 
Banner_4.png
 
 
 

A person living with family and sexual violence may show some of the following signs or behaviours:

  • Stop seeing friends and family.

  • Appearing afraid of, or worried about, pleasing their partner.

  • Not coming to work, church or other regular activities.

  • Appearing worried, depressed, withdrawn or losing their confidence.

  • Saying their partner is jealous or has a bad temper.

  • Showing visible signs of physical violence, such as bruises or cuts.

  • Saying their partner always phones or texts them when they are apart.

  • Not wanting to leave their children with their partner.

  • Saying their partner pressures or forces them to do sexual things.

  • Saying their partner controls their money.

  • Experiencing harassment or stalking after ending a relationship.

Did you know?

A person experiencing family and sexual violence may be ashamed to talk about it. They may be afraid of losing their job.

Act now

If you suspect someone is experiencing family and sexual violence, recommend that they call the 1-Tok Kaunselin Helpim Lain on 7150 8000 visit the Family Support Centre at Port Moresby General hospital or call the Bel isi PNG Case Management Centre (Operated by Femili PNG) on 7055 4401.

 
Tips for CEOs: How does Bel isi PNG support leaders?
 
HANDS-2.png
 
 
 

Tips for CEOs: How does Bel isi PNG support leaders?

Bel isi PNG helps create an environment where it is safe to raise Family and Sexual Violence issues by:

-       Defining the ways your organisation can assist employees

-       Ensuring information is provided about available services

-       Providing transport options for staff needing to access services

-       Creating an environment that fosters behaviour change

What does Bel isi PNG offers to its subscribers?

An internal response ensuring employees are provided with the relevant information about local services

  • Clinical care

  • Psychosocial support

  • Safe house options

  • Comprehensive case management services

  • Legal assistance

  • Welfare services

  • Transport

Make the most out of your partnership with Bel isi PNG

  • Communicate widely that your organisation has joined Bel isi PNG Ensure your staff know this issue is important to you as leaders – speak about it often and participate in community events that address violence.

  • Ensure you have a FSV policy in place, communicate what this policy entails and what support is available.

  • Identify and train workplace contacts.

  • Look at your peers and share with your peers – the Bel isi PNG newsletter will help.

  • Undertake prevention activates – Bel isi PNG can help.

Ask Bel isi PNG to speak with your staff about all support options and distribute Bel isi PNG toolkit.

 
Case conference for better outcomes
 
Banner_3.png
 
 
 

Case conferencing is an important part of case management, especially for complex cases. A case conference is when core service providers who are directly involved with a client’s case are called in to meet and discuss challenges and actions to take for the best outcomes of the client.  

In coordination with the National Capital District (NCD) Family and Sexual Violence Action Committee (FSVAC) Secretariat, service providers were invited for a case conference on 18th October 2018 to discuss a sexual abuse case of a child client. All partners directly involved with the case discussed the challenges that each faced, and also discussed the actions that each will take with a timeframe in place.

A follow up meeting provided updates on the recommendations made during the first meeting.  Bel isi PNG will continue to work closely with the NCD FSVAC and partners to ensure positive outcomes for the case.

 
A dedication to Bel isi Initiative
 
Banner_resources.png
 
 
 

Your smile melted away my compound fears

Your handshake shivered down my timid miseries

Your hug unleashed all my anxious butterflies

Your kindness squeezed out my lonesome melancholies

Your voice trickled music to my troubled ears

Your words kindled hope for my strayed paths

 

A time out for my weary running feet

A relieve for my protective shielding hands

A nap for my emotional puffy eyes

A silence for my bereaved estranged voice

A peace for my shattered heart

A therapy for my battered soul

 

Turned my doubt into mission

Turned my hatred into lesson

Turned my scar into subject

Turned my sorrow into melody

Turned my pain into song

 

Now I can dance this song

Now I can sing this melody

Now I can write this subject

Now I can teach this lesson

Now I’m on this mission

 

Bel isi.

 

Survivor,

Safe House

*A dedication to Bel isi Initiative.

 
An inspiration to Bel isi PNG: Newcrest’s ‘Trupla Man Trupla Meri’
 
TMTM workforce 2.JPG
 
 
 

Interview with Craig Jetson, Executive General Manager Cadia and Lihir and GTS of Newcrest Mining Ltd. about the “Trupla Man Trupla Meri” initiative

“A Ribbon of Hope is Rising. It’s Time to Break the Silence, It’s Time to End the Violence” (Lyrics from Newcrest Lihir song “Its Time”)

Lihir Newcrest’ s Trupla Man Trupla Meri was born in 2014, out of the intention to address the ‘disconnection’ between a safe and happy home, and safety and productivity at work. It is based on the premise that safety starts within a person, and if someone is not settled or safe at home, they become a risk to themselves and others at work, especially in a highly technical environment like a mine site. Newcrest’ s 5,500 strong workforce on Lihir have the opportunity to become agents of change and role models. Closing the gap between the work and home environment, TMTM works at empowering victims of violence, while supporting perpetrators and bystanders to become advocates.

 

What Prompted Newcrest to action?

CJ: When I arrived at Lihir in 2014, getting to know the country, the site, and the hospital managed by Newcrest, I got to see the level of violence present every day, particularly women presenting with horrendous abuse-related injuries.  In parallel to this, becoming acquainted with the operations on site, I was intrigued by unexplained incidents presenting safety issues, caused by distractions, possibly by micro-sleep. We quickly made the connection between the two, and facing the linked impact of violence on business and on personal relationships, thought about ways to resolve both: making the environment safer at work and happier at home.

 

A few years down the track, what does Trupla Man Trupla Meri look like practically today?

CJ: The program, developed by a committee, includes awareness material on managing relationship tensions to support our efforts at reaching out firstly to our workforce and then further, to the outside communities. Through what we call “constructive conversations”, we have shared hundreds of stories, working through the emotions together. An important aspect is that the program is non-blaming, non-finger-pointing, nondiscriminatory. Indeed, it offers a sanctuary for self-confessed perpetrators to come out, and to work at changing their behavior. The idea is to emphasize prevention, before tensions escalate, before the trauma occurs.

 

How do you evaluate the success of Trupla Man Trupla Meri?

CJ: We have multiple indicators telling us how the program is growing, and how we keep it on the right track. We have figures of how many staff pass through our program, get a referral, take trainings, or act as advocates.  We also have strong interest from business houses who have heard about us and ask us for advice to replicate the experience inside their organization. Next, our work safety statistics are comparatively excellent, with a relatively low rate of incidents and injuries compared to other sites. And of course, there is the enormous positive feedback from so many people telling us how much the program has changed their life.

 

What unexpected challenges have you had to work around?

CJ: Significant challenges have been… well, the issue itself, particularly men having to cope with looking at themselves; it is so very challenging, especially when remorse and blame are involved.  Launching the action itself was a challenge … getting a driver to drive a truck painted in pink… (laugh). We had to persevere, we had to break through the initial resistance and mistrust, but we hung on. We really wanted to help people, to help mining.  And we did, we broke through the reluctance barrier, we got through to participation, and we achieved the cooperation we wanted to achieve.

What advice would you give to an organisation that would like to step in and do something like Trupla Man Trupla Meri?

CJ: You will need lots of courage, you need to be brave to take on the problem, and you need to have conviction. You get close to staff who come in injured, or who resign because of pressure. You have to understand what influence you can have, what you are trying to achieve, and what the limits are. You want to stop people getting hurt at work because, say, they are distracted by the events of their two weeks in the village. You have to be prepared to check the root cause of the issues at work.

 

What would you like Trupla Man Trupla Meri to look like 10 years from now?

CJ: Well, the foremost want is for the program to keep people from harm, to bring down the violence, and to more widely share tools to prevent it. But also, Newcrest would like to leave a business legacy, an industry legacy. We would like to show that Newcrest is really a world-class leader, caring, responsible, identifying what needs to be resolved, and involving the staff in finding solutions. Four years into the journey, an initiative such as Trupla Man Trupla Meri is a business and a moral imperative. We are witnessing a massive culture shift, and we are part of it.  

 

 

 
Bel isi PNG EVAW Walk
 
2018 EVAW Walk
 
 
 

Port Moresby, NCD, PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Nearly two thousand people marched in peace and solidarity to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW). Governor Powes Parkop led the walkers through the city with the chant, “Strongpla man respectim meri”.

This year’s walk attracted the largest numbers ever with corporate partners and leaders, the public sector, the Brisbane Broncos Rugby League Club, the Internal Inland Revenue Commission (IRC), the PNG Orchids Women’s Rugby League team and Governor Powes Parkop’s NCDC walkers joining the effort to raise awareness about the need to address family and sexual violence (FSV).

Community leaders called for action including Kathy Kiage who told the crowd, “I am here today because I am passionate about change in Papua New Guinea and in our community. I will promote an end to gender-based violence by working with women and girls to find solutions to their violent situations.”

Oil Search Foundation with Bel isi PNG, a public private partnership to address FSV, organised the walk. Bel isi PNG offers case management, safe house and counselling assistance to women and their children. Staff from companies that subscribe to the initiative can access a full suite of services and their leaders can find professional support to drive behaviour change in their companies and communities.

Studies reveal that three out of four women in PNG will experience violence in their lifetime. The large number of people participating in today’s walk shows the community commitment to changing attitudes towards women and girls.

It is well recognised that FSV also is a cost to business. One company surveyed lost an estimated K3million in one year due to the impact of FSV and 68% of employees surveyed had experienced family violence.

Peter Botten, Managing Director of Oil Search is a strong supporter of the Bel isi initiative, “At Oil Search we have a domestic violence procedure and subscribe to Bel isi PNG. This combination of support is designed to assist our staff and is the right thing to do as human beings.”

Bel isi PNG is supported by the Australian Government in partnership with the Government of Papua New Guinea as part of the Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development program. The initiative would not have been possible without the founding support of Bank South Pacific, Steamships, Oil Search and many other partners.

 
Men Champion Change
 
IMG_2310.JPG
 
 
 

Port Moresby, NCD, PAPUA NEW GUINEA

By Amanda Anderson

Fourteen men gathered one afternoon to talk about a problem close to their hearts and discuss solutions to a shared challenge. These men were a diverse group, representing businessmen and public servants, community leaders, sports stars and young men just starting their careers. They participated openly as equals, coming together as fathers, sons, brothers, community members, neighbours and employers all seeking a safe home, community and nation for women and girls.

Every man at the table had a story to tell. Most had suffered or witnessed violence as a child and understood the fear, pain and injury this can cause. Each man, in his own way has rejected gender-based violence as the “normal” way of life and made a conscious decision to ensure the strength and value of all Papua New Guinean women is nurtured with love and respect.

Internal Revenue Commissioner Alois Daton shared with the group that he is a male champion to end violence because the only solution to this problem is for men to work with men. As both a leader and an active advocate he stood proudly in his Internal Revenue Commission uniform which read “Treat Her Right” while pointing out the female version reads “I Am Equal”.

Male champion Eddie Aila noted that too often men lack the confidence to accept responsibility for their actions. He recounted the moment when he realised he had the power within himself to end his own violent behaviour and accept responsibility for his actions. He feels all men can change, and there is an essential role that other men can play to help. He felt so strongly he founded Warrior Culture, a local program which supports men in overcoming violent behaviour and personal challenges charting a path for change.

A small group of confident and passionate young men who work for UN Women’s Sanap Wantaim, Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) and University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) were amongst the group. As strong advocates for women and girls they shared insightful stories from work in rural and settlement communities and recounted lessons learned through listening to men. They also spoke enthusiastically of creating a “new normal” for PNG, with the firm belief that working with youth is essential.

One such youth program is the 3R’s or Rights, Respect and Resilience which focusses on behaviour change in youths and respect for oneself and others. This is implemented in secondary schools and is supported by the Australian Government. As Christopher Kageni from Sanap Wantaim quipped, “you must bend the tree while it is young before it grows too strong in its roots”.

Broncos player Corey Parker also attended the forum and encouraged the men by emphasising, “as a sportsman I do not respect men who do not respect women. We all have our part to play and no part is too small”.

Corey Parker visited Port Moresby to join the Elimination of Violence Against Women walk where nearly 2,000 people walked peacefully through the city to express their support. This walk was organised by Oil Search Foundation and Bel isi PNG.

Bel isi PNG is a new public-private partnership to address family and sexual violence thorough not only the provision of essential services for survivors of violence, but also through a platform for the men and women to lead change.

While we often find problems at every corner, problems which may feel like impossible obstacles, these men are focussed on solutions and positive change for their communities. And the brightest news is they are not alone and are looking to encourage and join forces with other male champions and advocates. Are you ready to be part of their journey?

 
Voice from Subscriber and Partner
 
SCC.jpg
 
 
 

I am pleased to contribute to the inaugural Bel isi PNG newsletter from the perspective of both Oil Search Foundation (OSF) that is key partner as well as a Subscriber. 

Over the years in different locations - Australia, my asples, Alaska USA, and in Papua New Guinea - I have seen firsthand the effects family and sexual violence (FSV) on friends, loved ones and my staff. As a professional, I understand all too well the burden FSV places on the workplace in terms of missed days at work, a lack of performance of staff, and from occupational health and safety concerns. These are the reasons my own organisation, Oil Search, has put in place a Domestic Violence Policy and why OSF has prioritised addressing FSV as part of its core strategy.

There is now a wealth of international, evidenced based research that confirms the links between domestic violence and negative economic development. A more recent study in Port Moresby put a dollar sign against the cost to doing business with one company alone calculating costs of $3 million kina in one year. Business leaders have started looking at these figures and understanding the impact of domestic violence on their bottom line.  

A turning point in bringing individual companies together to address the problem was the donation of a residential compound by Bank of South Pacific to use as a safe house. As conversations on what to do with this generous offer evolved, the idea of galvanising the private sector as a key partner to address domestic violence matured and a public private partnership to address family and sexual violence emerged. Bel isi has risen as a result of cooperation, joints efforts and donations in time, knowledge, in kind and in cash.

It is ultimately partnership that made the initiative possible. Following BSP’s offer, Steamships Trading donated office space now used as a case-management centre. G4S Security is providing 24 hours transport to those requiring it from an unsafe to safe location free of charge, Brian Bell is providing cleaning supplies and furniture, 9-Mile Farm and Stop and Shop [AA1] are donating food and PNG Power is giving free electricity.

Importantly the Australian Government, through their Pacific Women program, has provided a significant grant for the project. This funding is being used to not only support new case management and safe house services, but to improve domestic violence services across Port Moresby. Many of the generous donations we are receiving from the private sector are also being shared. For example, we share food donations with other local safe houses. Our moto is that nobody is left behind.

Improving services for all survivors and supporting the private sector to help their employees address the cost to doing business is one part of Bel isi PNG. But we cannot ignore prevention. This is where leadership is essential. A key element is to work with private sector and other leaders to support them to galvanise change. This approach recognises that the formal employment sector has ‘captured’ within their organisation tens of thousands of employees who can be inspired to change their behaviour and also become champions of change within their own communities. We want to provide the support, tools and platform for leaders to make a difference both individually and collectively.

We are also working closely with the public sector on both prevention and improved services. National Capital District Commission Governor, Powes Parkop has been an enormous support to Bel isi PNG from the start. Since 2007, Governor Parkop has seen Port Moresby and its composite PNG population as the terrain to initiate changes that he wants to see spreading to the rest of the country. His focus on prevention and empowering communities to change complements perfectly the work we are doing through Bel isi PNG.

In the first month of launching Bel isi, I personally have already seen the impact we can and will have as a community. We have helped local safe houses with food and sustainability planning, we have spoken with numerous leaders about their roles in prevention and improved services and held a leadership forum to share international best practice, and we already helping survivors including two women from my own staff.

I was able to help these women immediately when they came to me with terrible problems of violence at home. In both cases they went to the Bel isi PNG case management centre. They were supported to receive much needed medical care. In one case the police were involved and arrested the perpetrator, a rapist. In the second case a protection order was immediately obtained, and our safe house received its first client. They were both immensely thankful for the support and are already back at work.

What I am most proud of is that we are supporting the Papua New Guinean community who is standing up to say Enough is Enough. They are acting in their communities, their churches, their business and homes. They are drawing support from the existing network, and by joining it, creating even greater momentum. Individually we can do our bit but together we can make an incredible and long-lasting difference. Thank you for joining us in this most important initiative.

Stephanie Copus-Campbell,
Executive Director of the Papua New Guinean (PNG) Oil Search Foundation