Linden security guard’s rape exposes shameful social issues


first_imgDear Editor,I am appalled and deeply hurt by news reports about the vicious rape of a female security guard while she was on duty in Linden, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) trying to make ends meet.This crime is most disturbing to me because the victim works in the security industry of which I am a part, and also because she is a mature lady, old enough to be her attacker’s mother.This rape exposes two shameful social issues that are exploding in our society like dynamite. The first is the increasing risks faced by women who work as security guards .The other is the spate of violent crimes against women and girls of all ages.No matter what job you do, there will be occupational risks. If you work in an office or as a minibus driver or conductor on the road, or in a field, factory, mine, or hospital, you simply cannot help being exposed to certain risks while on the job.Some jobs have a much higher risk factor than others, like being an airline pilot, a Police Officer, a military officer, a bodyguard or a security officer. Jobs like these are called “high-risk employment” and the risks associated with them have to be carefully managed or else there will be a backlash.That is why I am particularly worried about the security industry. I am hearing about too many cases of female security workers being murdered, raped and assaulted. In many cases, these women do not get justice and their attackers go unpunished.The sad thing is that these attacks are happening at a time when there are more women in the security industry than ever before. Since many of these women have no other source of income to take care of themselves and their families, the security industry is a mainstay of many Guyanese families.I remember a Labour Minister once advocated the removal of female security guards from night duty. But is that really the solution? Isn’t security work, whether it involves males or females, whether it is done day or night, a risky business?There have even been cases where male guards were attacked and raped by bandits and thieves. In my company and others, there have been situations where security guards were attacked and murdered.The attacks on female security guards put the spotlight on the plight of all women in Guyana. They are left alone to care for their child or, in some cases, several children.This is a serious problem in this country. Single parents have produced some amazing, brilliant, outstanding children with whom they are unable to spend sufficient time as they have to work eight hours or more shifts. Neglected children often turn to criminality and take out their frustration on society.Maybe this is one underlying factor behind the horrific cruelty against women. Recently, in Berbice, an elderly woman in pampers was raped and the Police did not even believe her. Old women in Wakenaam, Essequibo and even Georgetown were raped and murdered in their homes by young men.Of course, this wickedness occurs worldwide. When such people are caught, they ought to be sentenced to life imprisonment.I believe in jail time with hard labour for such people, as well as those who are involved in child molestation and rape.To hear that someone’s wife or mother has been raped is painful and hurtful to me as an operator of a security company.Female security guards have proven themselves to be more professional, dynamic and enthusiastic. They are more committed to their jobs because they need cash to care for their families and most of them are single parents.To me, female security personnel are a most important component in security in this country because they are usually more trustworthy and reliable than men and would not risk jail time because they have commitments to their children.As the head of a security company, I know that a whistle has great psychological impact in crime fighting. Also, if this guard had a baton in her hand, she could have hit her attacker and protected herself. Of course the Police might have turned around and charged her.Female security guards and male guards need to build a rapport with the neighbours around, keep an eye out for the neighbours.They have to think outside the box; for example, if there is no alarm system, no whistle, no baton, no firearm, they can keep a tin can to hit with a stick to raise an alarm.As a society, we need to find innovative ways to deal with shameful social issues of the risks female security guards face and the cruelty to women and girls in our society.Sincerely,Roshan Khan SnrCEO/Founder – RK’s Guyana Security Serviceslast_img

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