Politically acceptable poverty

Issue 149 (Autumn 2014)

In the current popular discourse the media and the government have positioned migrants from the European Union (EU) as welfare threats and, despite the evidence that they are net contributors to the economy, as acceptable targets for welfare reform.In addition to the stream of new rules reducing their entitlement, EU migrants also face a host of hidden administrative obstacles, impairing their access to welfare benefits to which they are entitled under EU law. Challenging these obstacles may not be politically popular but, given the vilification of a vulnerable demographic, the need to do so is pressing. Charlotte O’Brien describes the work of a new project that hopes to increase EU migrants’ access to justice.

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