12 SOCIETY h t t p : / / w w w. t e h r a n t i m e s . c o m / s o c i e t y
OCTOBER 7, 2010 TEHRAN TIMES INTERNATIONAL DAILY
Wives gain as
Blind man barred from Dubai Neurotic people can each cost
but no real
ﬂight over disability
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A on another flight that’s convenient for him and
society $22,000 a year: study
NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) – Neurotic people aren’t
only making their own lives harder but they also cost
blind American traveler says he was stopped offered him a voucher for a free flight to make society billions of dollars in health care spending
progress from getting on a flight in Dubai on Tuesday up for the mishap. and lost productivity every year, according to Dutch
because of his disability — a decision the “This morning’s events were extremely
NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) Researchers from the VU University Medical Center
government-run airline insists was a mistake unfortunate and should not have happened.
– Women were winners in in Amsterdam analyzed the cost of being neurotic and
it regrets. We will conduct a full investigation to find out
the U.S. recession, as wives’ found while the least neurotic individuals cost society
Zuhair Mahmoud, of Arlington, Virginia, told what went wrong in this situation and take all
income jumped to a record less than $3,000 per year, the most neurotic people cost
The Associated Press he ran into problems means necessary to ensure it does not happen
share of family earnings. But it more than $22,000 a year.
when he went to check in for a 10:10 a.m. again,” FlyDubai CEO Ghaith al-Ghaith said in
was only by default. Neuroticism -- a proclivity toward worry, anxiety
flight on FlyDubai to Amman, Jordan. He was an e-mail to the AP.
Wives earned 47 percent and emotional ups and downs -- is considered to be
planning a brief stay in the Jordanian capital The discount carrier has grown quickly
of family income in 2009, up a personality trait with genetic roots, and is strongly
before heading back to the United States. since it was launched by the Gulf city-state’s
from 45 percent the previous associated with several types of mental illness, including
“They looked at me and said: ‘Well, we government in June last year. It focuses on
year, not because their salaries depression, anxiety and schizophrenia.
can’t take you. ... You’re traveling alone,’” he low-cost short-haul flights throughout the
rose but because more of their “We thought that economic costs would be a good
recalled. Middle East.
husbands lost jobs, according way to assess the overall impact of neuroticism,”
Mahmoud protested and asked employees Al-Ghaith is a former executive at Dubai’s
to a study from the Carsey researcher Dr. Pim Cuijpers told Reuters Health. “We
to check with their superiors. He said he was flagship airline, Emirates. The two carriers
Institute at the University of were surprised that the impact was this large.”
told that there was nothing they could do operate as separate airlines, though both are
New Hampshire. While research has looked into the economic costs of
because it was airline policy not to allow a owned by the emirate of Dubai and are chaired
“Make no mistake: this individual mental disorders, most studies of neuroticism
blind traveler onboard unaccompanied. by an uncle of the sheikdom’s ruler.
increase is not due to have focused on just one disorder or aspect of mental
“I was mad. ... I couldn’t believe it,” the Mahmoud said he is keeping his options
advancement or opportunities Blind American man Zuhair Mahmoud who was health, Cuijpers and colleagues said in their study
37-year-old information technology specialist open, including possible legal action.
for women, but rather it is an rejected from his ﬂight, in Dubai, United Arab published in the Archives of General Psychiatry.
said. “I tried to reason with them, but I just got Emirates, Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2010. He wants the airline and UAE government
indication of hard financial For their study they looked at about 5,500 adults and
a single cold answer.” regulators to take steps to ensure the same
times for families,” said Kristin examined their medical costs and the amount of days
He left the airport and went to stay at a thing doesn’t happen to others.
Smith, a family demographer at they were absent from work to come up with an annual
brother’s house in Dubai until he could catch another flight out. “I’m probably not going to come back to Dubai ever unless I’m
the Institute. figure (in dollars).
The airline doesn’t dispute Mahmoud’s account. assured these sorts of things aren’t going to happen anymore,”
Women weren’t getting They assessed neurotic traits using a 14-item scale
Its chief executive apologized for the incident and said the he said. “The real test is how it’s handled and how it’s reacted
higher wages during the crafted from a personality inventory questionnaire used
carrier does not discriminate against blind passengers or others to. Mistakes happen all the time. It’s how you deal with them that
recession. The median wages of widely in the Netherlands.
with special needs. FlyDubai also promised to rebook Mahmoud defines who you are.”
employed wives fell to $30,000 The researchers found that the average cost for
in 2009 from $31,041 two years
earlier. The median income of
Lead poisoning kills 400 children in Nigeria: MSF people who scored in the top 5 percent based on
neuroticism was $12,362 above the average for the
husbands with employed wives KANO, Nigeria (AFP) — Lead poisoning lead poisoning, more than 400 children Humanitarian Affairs, told AFP in Geneva population.
fell in that time to $42,000 from has killed more than 400 children under have died in the last six months,” said that more than 3,000 children lived in Excess costs for people in the top 10 percent were
$46,562. the age of five as a result of contamination El-Shafii Muhammad Ahmad, MSF seven affected villages in an area of $8,243, while costs for the 25 percent who scored the
Instead, the economy shed from illegal gold extraction in northern project director in Zamfara. high-intensity wildcat gold mining. highest on neuroticism were $5,572.
more male-dominated jobs Nigeria, an international aid agency said “But we in MSF believe the figure is Byrs said many parents were afraid The increased costs associated with neuroticism
such as in construction and on Tuesday. much more than that,” he told AFP by to come forward when their children were “considerably higher” than those for associated
manufacturing, which left wives The children died over the last six telephone. fell ill, or mistook symptoms including mental health problems, for example mood and anxiety
earning more of the family take- months in several villages in Zamfara Preliminary findings by UN experts convulsions with malaria. disorders, substance use disorders, and somatic
home pay, the report said. state, where lead-rich run-off from on the contamination in Zamfara state, “The pollution is far from over in these disorders (meaning psychologically related physical
“As husbands lose their jobs, illegal gold mining has entered the soil which were released on Tuesday, said areas, we have looked at five villages,” problems), the researchers said.
family earnings plummet, and and water supply, said Medecines Sans that “growing amounts of children are Byrs told journalists following the For example, common mental disorders cost an extra
the role of wives’ earnings often Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders - dying from lead poisoning.” release of a joint OCHA-United Nations $600 million per million inhabitants, they estimated,
becomes critical to keeping MSF). Elisabeth Byrs, a spokeswoman for Environmental Program (UNEP) report compared to nearly $1.4 billion for neuroticism.
families afloat,” said Smith. “Based on the record of fatalities from the UN office for the Coordination of into the poisoning.