Saddam Hussain Is Struggling to Find a Job

He was named for the dictator, and it's not going well
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 20, 2017 2:54 PM CDT
Updated Mar 21, 2017 4:03 AM CDT
Saddam Hussain Is Struggling to Find a Job
Customers buy snacks at a snack bar which uses a portrait of the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to promote itself, in Changchun in northeast China's Jinlin province Friday June 22, 2007. The Chinese characters on the sign read: "Show respect to Saddam Hussein, Challenge authority, American food...   (AP Photo)

Saddam Hussain's name is making it difficult for him to get a job. "People are scared to hire me," the 25-year-old Indian marine engineer tells the Hindustan Times. Hussain was, yes, named for that Saddam Hussein; the name was given to him by his grandfather. It turned out to be a poor choice, as the young man has been unable to find a job since graduating university two years ago, despite having done very well in school. And he's applied for dozens of positions. He says he's spoken with some of the HR departments of companies he's applied with, and they told him his name was the problem, because it could cause "suspicion."

One recruitment expert points out that this would be a problem especially if a job requires travel abroad, during which he might get stopped by airport or border authorities: "He might just keep getting stuck or the company has to pull him out of the sticky situation, making the hire cumbersome," the expert says. Hussain got his first name legally changed to Sajid, but though he got all his official documents changed to reflect his new name, his original name still poses a problem because it's listed on educational certificates, which prospective employers want to see. He's working on getting those certificates changed as well, but the process is moving slowly, the BBC reports. (Meanwhile, in America, a guy is trying to change his name to Hitler.)

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