ECAS Knowledge Centre
Freedom of Movement in the EU
European Citizens' Initiative (ECI)
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This report explores the employment experiences of migrants from East and Central Europe, and reviews employer demand for their labour. The research took advantage of the accession of ten new countries to the European Union on 1 May 2004 to explore the consequences of granting EU citizens' rights to migrants in the UK. It describes the perceptions and experiences of the employment of migrants from four new member states (the Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Poland and Lithuania) working in low-wage occupations. Sectors of the UK economy selected were agriculture, construction, hospitality, and the au pair sector. It examines employers' recruitment practices and why they hire migrant labour; in particular, what the perceived advantages of migrant labour are. The report also discusses the Workers' Registration Scheme. The research surveyed and interviewed over a thousand workers and employers before and after EU enlargement.
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