Economic asset or welfare tourists? Political reactions to Eastern European migrants in the UK

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Abstract

In this article, it is argued that Eastern European migrants have become the focus of critical migration discourse in the current Conservative-led Government in the United Kingdom (UK), after the more welcoming period of the preceding Labour Governments. From the 1990s, the Labour Governments have favoured the enlargement of the European Union (EU) and the free movement of Eastern European migrants within the Union by appealing to economic benefits. The speeches and statements made by the British Ministers for Europe will be used as the main empirical material of the article, complemented with other political documentation. The analysis addresses the period from the 1990s until the current decade, when people from the new EU Member States have been able to move freely to the UK. While both Labour and Conservative parties have restricted migration from non-EU countries, there are significant differences with regard to their approach to EU migration.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSiirtolaisuus - Migration
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)3-10
Number of pages8
ISSN0355-3779
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 517 Political science

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