• Sweden edition
 
MIGRATION BOARD OUTRAGE
Man disciplined for comparing baby to Saddam Hussein

Man disciplined for comparing baby to Saddam Hussein

Published: 28 Jan 2012 09:56 GMT+01:00
Updated: 28 Jan 2012 09:56 GMT+01:00

The man, who has worked at the agency for more than 30 years, was under investigation not only for the insulting comparison, but also for physically assaulting a female colleague and making derogatory remarks about a woman wearing a headscarf.

After a colleague of his assisted a veil-wearing woman, the man went up and asked his co-worker, "How does it feel to talk to 'one of those'?"

When his shocked colleague reported his remarks to the disciplinary committee, he responded by deliberately pushing her twice, to onlooking co-workers' surprise.

The comparison of the baby to the former Iraqi dictator came during an interview conducted last year between the employee and an asylum seeking couple fromIraq who brought their newborn infant along to the meeting.

“Who do you think he looks like?” one of the proud parents asked the Migration Board employee.

Saddam Hussein,” the man replied.

According to the man himself, this comment was intended as a joke.

However, the report filed showed that the man's supervisor has had numerous conversations with him since 2007 about his behaviour toward colleagues and asylum seekers.

The Migration Board's disciplinary committee has now ruled that the man is to keep his job, despite these incidents.

However, he is to be transferred to another department, and punished with a loss of wages.

Clara Guibourg (clarabara@hotmail.com)

Your comments about this article

11:01 January 28, 2012 by SimonDMontfort
Maybe its just me, but I don't think this issue requires a further story - following on from the original story which drew nearly 70 comments.

The only people that need to know this guy was disciplined are those who either complained/were offended by him - surely?
11:14 January 28, 2012 by occassional
This guy deserves some time off for actually being harassed. How so?

Well. Like this...

Our fellow was faced with an idiotic and provocative question like 'Who do you think he looks like?'. I mean, what is the scope of the answer? Clearly the little sod could not be compared to Gerard Depardieu or Benny from ABBA or one of the parents over the other (with people from that part of the world being somewhat edgy over matters of paternity, adultery and the like.)

What does that leave our hero with then? Silence or a dry 'I do not know' might cause offence to yet more edginess over dented honour, esteem, etc. Plus it could have planted the seed of doubt over paternity and caused more harm than good in the long run. So, he went for the name of someone famous. And therein lies the problem.

Now, honestly, how many (in)famous Iraqis can any of you who read this, name? Saddam and Chemical Ali spring to mind. Only! Too bad both of them cause offence too.

Conclusion: employee when faced with a tendentious question could not caused any less offence by having answered otherwise in view of cultural sensitivities. A case could be made he was in fact harassed and thus needs counselling. Time off to that effect approved.

Talk about flawless logic.
11:52 January 28, 2012 by zooeden
Every dog has its bone and life´s like a box of chocolates!!!
16:55 January 28, 2012 by strixy
In a normal country he would have been sacked.
16:57 January 28, 2012 by Querist
.

Some people are so thin skinned...

Now if he had compared the newborn to 'Uday' ... well - that's a different story altogether!

.
17:09 January 28, 2012 by bells on the knight
if you've ever been to the migration board you'd seen that 90% are.....immigrants but nooo you certainly can't dismiss them for being racist can you like would have been the case else
17:22 January 28, 2012 by Dave N
"In a normal country he would have been sacked."

Sadly that is very nearly the truth. Insanity has become normal in Politically Correct Europe.
17:26 January 28, 2012 by skylarkpilot
Personally I think the people were lucky. Migrationverket are probably the slowest supposedly professional organisation I've ever had the misfortune to deal with. I would happily be told I looked like Saddam if it meant they'd get the hell on with my paperwork ! In fact to hell with it...they are all clowns, sack the lot !
21:22 January 28, 2012 by engagebrain
Did the baby actually resemble Saddam Hussein ?
02:40 January 29, 2012 by Jannik
I applaud this man for having an excellent sense of humour.
06:58 January 29, 2012 by Grokh
so the baby did look like saddan LOL
13:30 January 29, 2012 by hughknows
I'm still reeling that someone in this man's position wasn't 'Slammed'. It seems most people one reads about in The Local, who live here in Sweden and do something a bit wrong, are 'slammed'. Maybe if he had been criticised, punished, AND lost his job that would count as slammed.
15:25 January 29, 2012 by Chickybee
What's wrong with Muslim immigrants going to more accommodating Muslim countries where they won't have integration issues?

Oh, they're aren't any peaceful Muslim countries - how remiss of me!
16:20 January 29, 2012 by Puffin
I guess most of the posters above missed the fact that he assaulted a co-worker!!
07:47 January 30, 2012 by johan rebel
I'm surprised he wasn't fired, because in Sweden possessing a sense of humor almost brands you a criminal by definition.

Has anybody ever heard of a genuinely funny Swedish stand-up comedian?
01:10 January 31, 2012 by mcarroll1
He insulted these people, assaulted a colleague and physically assaulted a woman just because she was, a. a woman (like to see him try it on with her husband present and b. because he is racist. The guy should be brought up on charges, loose his job and get a good hiding into the bargain for being a bully. Bully the bully is my antidote. Not very Swedish I know.
08:42 February 2, 2012 by Trenatos
As a Swede I find this insane. How can they let this man keep his job?

Insulting the people you're supposed to be helping, retaliating against co-workers, and still they let him keep his job?

Migrationsverket, your conduct in response to these incidents is bullshit.

The man should have been fired, the fact that he's been working there for 30 years should NOT give anyone cart blanche to do whatever they please.
16:06 February 2, 2012 by Anthraxious
"Offended" - what a useless word. How can we have laws that help people who are "offended"? What is an offence? So many people go apesh*t over how "cute" babies are and constantly say retarded comments like "He looks like you!" Yeah, as if that already shows. But when the baby looks like someone else it's suddenly a crime to say it. What's so bad about expressing an observation? If someone told me my son looked like Hitler I would either 1. Say he's full of sh*t and needs his eyes checked, or 2. Wow, you're right!

In either case, I wouldn't start crying like a baby cause someone said something I might not like. Grow up.

Only REAL reason we have stuff like "offence" is cause americunts invented it to be able to get paid whenever someone called them an idiot when they were acting like an idiot.
17:14 February 7, 2012 by klubbnika
OMG! The immigration officer guy who said that is soooooo stupid. Or did he think he was being funny?
07:11 February 9, 2012 by Marc the Texan
Outrageous. So if a joke happens to be politically incorrect, you can lose your wages. The only way to stop this political correctness run amok is to sue for damages and your human right to humor.
Today's headlines
Ebola crisis
Sweden pledges new aid to UN Ebola fund
Photo: TT

Sweden pledges new aid to UN Ebola fund

Sweden has offered a new sizeable contribution to the fund set up by UN chief Ban K-moon to fight the Ebola outbreak. READ  

Society
'Dark forces' target refugee hunting scheme
Photo: Lars-Göran Thuresson/Älgriket

'Dark forces' target refugee hunting scheme

The Swedish hunting association runs a project to encourage young asylum-seekers to learn about hunting, a move which has proved controversial among some far right groups. READ  

Business & Money
American sales squeeze Ericsson profits
Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg presents the third-quarter earnings report at the company's headquarters in Kista. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT

American sales squeeze Ericsson profits

Swedish telecoms equipment maker Ericsson reported a decline in net profit in the third quarter despite an increase in sales, boosted by business in emerging markets. READ  

Interview
'Too many concerts feel the same'
Sofar hosts secret gigs in Swedish apartments. Photo: Sofar

'Too many concerts feel the same'

Kattis Bjork founded Stockholm's secret gig scene - Sofar - a year ago. The Local caught up with her as she prepared to celebrate the project's anniversary this weekend and revealed the concept will spread to other Swedish cities in 2015. READ  

Stockholm 'sub hunt'
Sweden calls off suspect submarine search
Ships are returning to shore in Sweden. Photo: TT

Sweden calls off suspect submarine search

The core search for a suspected foreign vessel in Swedish waters has been called off. The armed forces said they remained convinced foreign underwater activity had taken place but had not identified an intruder. READ  

Business & Money
US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks
Ed Carbaugh prepares to install parts on a truck engine on an assembly line at Volvo Trucks' powertrain manufacturing facility in Hagerstown, Maryland, March 2014. Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

US and Japan fuel surge for Volvo trucks

Sweden's Volvo, the world's second-largest maker of trucks, said Friday it saw a spike in profits in the third quarter, boosted by thriving sales in the US and Japanese markets. READ  

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery
Cigarettes and beer photo: Shutterstock

Inspectors attacked at rogue doc’s surgery

Inspectors who were sent to shut down a doctor’s surgery in Gothenburg were physically attacked and fled the premises to get help from the police. READ  

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water
A Swede loads a car with alcohol in northern Germany. File photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Police turn Swede’s vodka into water

Swedish police say they will pay a man 16,000 kronor ($2,200) in damages after much of the alcohol they confiscated from him was stolen, while many of the bottles they returned were filled with water. READ  

Diplomacy
US to get first female ambassador in Sweden
File photo: Athena Center for Leadership Studies

US to get first female ambassador in Sweden

The United States Embassy in Stockholm is set to get its first female ambassador after the White House announced it was nominating the Iranian-American ex-investment banker Azita Raji to take over from Mark Brzezinski. READ  

Neo-Nazi attacks
Neo-Nazis cleared of knife attack on Nigerian
Police intervene after neo-Nazis attack an anti-Nazi rally in Kärrtorp, December 2013. Photo: Hampus Andersson/TT

Neo-Nazis cleared of knife attack on Nigerian

A Stockholm court has cleared three neo-Nazis of stabbing a Nigerian man in an unprovoked attack. But two of the men will face jail after they were convicted of racial agitation at a riot. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: October 24th - 31st
Gallery
People-watching: October 22nd
Gallery
In Pictures: Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist
Lifestyle
Eight things to love about renting a Swedish apartment
National
Vasa ship cannon blasted in Sweden
Blog updates

24 October

Editor’s blog, October 24th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, Get ready to read our weekly digest of Swedish news in less than 60 seconds. The..." READ »

 

24 October

Is darkness weather? (Blogweiser) »

"I try very hard not to talk about the weather. This has come after a decade..." READ »

 
 
 
National
Sub hunt: Day-by-day
National
Sub hunt: Stockholm islanders share their fears with The Local
Sponsored Article
The best options for oversea transfers
National
Get 20% off unique Swedish homeware
National
Dentist gives free care to Roma beggars
Business & Money
Get your own office in Gothenburg or Stockholm - free for a day
Gallery
Property of the week: Malmö
Gallery
PHOTOS: 'Foreign activity' in Swedish waters
Gallery
People-watching: October 19th
TT
Society
QUIZ: How good is your Swedish?
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden: October 17th - 24th
Society
The nudity... and nine other things expat men notice in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 15th
Gallery
Your views: Should outdoor smoking be banned in Sweden?
Business & Money
Sweden has 'large hole' in finances
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Finding a job in Stockholm
Society
Monster salmon caught in northern Sweden
Gallery
Property of the week: Lorensberg
National
Scandinavia's child bride
National
Ebola crisis: How is Sweden preparing?
Business & Money
How Sweden is becoming a cashless society
Gallery
Stockholm Burlesque Festival 2014
National
How a little red horse became a symbol for Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: October 12th
Business & Money
The hottest start-ups from southern Sweden
National
What's on in Sweden: October 10th - 17th
National
Stockholm is 'best' region for well-being
Gallery
People-watching: October 8th
National
Five facts to know about Patrick Modiano
Society
My Swedish Career: A French fashionista in Sweden
Society
Swede's anti-bully Facebook tale goes viral
Society
Have you seen Sweden's viral subway cancer campaign?
National
Isis: Swedes linked to Turkish prisoner swap
National
Should Swedes be banned from buying sex abroad?
Gallery
Fredrik Reinfeldt's leaving presents
National
Five Swedish TV shows you shouldn't miss
Gallery
A tool belt, a casserole, and a book. Fredrik Reinfeldt's parliament gifts
TT
Lifestyle
Top five winter festivals in Sweden
TT
National
Sami reindeer herders win mine reprieve
Gallery
Property of the Week: Gamla Enskede
Sponsored Article
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Team SCA
Sponsored Article
All-female SCA team takes off on Volvo Ocean Race
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

985
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN