Being EU Citizens: Perceptions and lived experiences of exercising social rights in the UK
As part of a larger European Commission-funded project: Barriers to EU Citizenship (http://beucitizen.eu/), this study examined how far EU Citizens coming to the UK know about, understand and feel able to exercise their social rights.
The overall aim of the research was to strengthen the evidence base informing political debate and policy in the UK concerning the practical opportunities and barriers that EU Citizens may face in exercising social rights to social protection, housing, health care and education while living and working in the UK. By selecting research participants from four countries with very different welfare and social rights regimes (Poland, Spain, Germany and Romania) the research investigated how (if at all) people’s experiences of social rights in their countries of origin influence the range of barriers and opportunities they may face in exercising such rights in the UK.
DSPI Principal Investigator: Professor Martin Seelib-Kaiser
Funded by: John Fell OUP Fund
- What are the different motivations for EU citizens to migrate to the UK?
- What expectations (if any) did EU citizens migrating to the UK have of their social rights to healthcare, housing, social protection and subsidiary ‘safety net’ support?
- Under what circumstances (if at all) have EU Citizens in the UK exercised these social rights? (including exporting or accessing rights to or from their ‘home country’ after arriving in the UK)
- What factors facilitated and/or inhibited the exercise of these rights while residing in the UK?
- Have their perceptions of social rights changed in any way since moving to the UK?
- How might we best investigate EU citizens’ perceptions, expectations of and de facto access to social rights across the European Union?
The research included: focus group discussions and in-depth interviews with EU Citizens from Poland, Spain, Germany and Romania living in the UK; interviews with service providers with whom EU Citizens are likely to engage in order to exercise their social rights; and a review of anonymised advice centre case files.
- Ehata, R. & Seeleib-Kaiser, M. (2017) 'Benefit tourism and EU migrant citizens: Real-world experiences', in John Hudson, Catherine Needham and Elke Heins (eds), Social Policy Review 29: Analysis and Debate in Social Policy
- Policy Brief: Key Characteristics of EU Migration to the UK and Northwest England: October 2015
- Policy Brief: Changes to EU citizens' social rights in the UK: October 2015
- Policy Brief: EU citizens' rights in comparative perspective: October 2015
- ‘Freedom of Movement in the EU’: Blogpost on the ESRC ‘UK in a Changing Europe’ website. http://ukandeu.ac.uk/freedom-of-movement-in-the-eu/ : June 2015
- ‘Key characteristics of EU migrant citizens in the UK’: ‘explainer’ on the ESRC ‘UK in a Changing Europe’ website. http://ukandeu.ac.uk/explainers/key-characteristics-of-eu-migrant-citizens-in-the-uk-and-northwest-england/ : December 2015
PUBLIC EVENT: DOES EU FREE MOVEMENT WORK FOR MANCHESTER? 21/10/15
OPEN FORUM: WORKING WITH EU MIGRANT CITIZENS IN GREATER MANCHESTER 08/09/15
PUBLIC EVENT: MAKING FREE MOVEMENT WORK 15/06/15
OPEN FORUM: WORKING WITH EU MIGRANT CITIZENS IN OXFORDSHIRE 08/03/15