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New mobilities in EuropePolish migration to Ireland post-2004$
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Torben Krings, Elaine Moriarty, and James Wickham

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780719088094

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719088094.001.0001

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From ‘boom to bust’: Polish migrants in the Irish labour market

From ‘boom to bust’: Polish migrants in the Irish labour market

(p.36) 3 From ‘boom to bust’: Polish migrants in the Irish labour market
New mobilities in Europe

Torben Krings

Elaine Moriarty

James Wickham

Alicja Bobek

Justyna Salamońska

Manchester University Press

This chapter locates mass migration from Poland in the broader Irish labour market context at the beginning of the twenty-first century. It shows how an unprecedented economic boom in conjunction with an open labour market policy in 2004 triggered large-scale migration from Poland and elsewhere. Ireland’s ‘goldrush’ labour market was able to integrate large-scale migrant flows without leading to major displacement of local workers. However, in the context of ‘light’ labour market regulation, incidents of migrant worker underpayment occurred which became an issue of concern in particular for the Irish trade union movement. In 2008, the country was hit by an unprecedented economic crisis and rising unemployment. However, in spite of the dramatically changed economic circumstances, Ireland is still host to a substantial foreign population as the mass migration that ensured post-2004 is likely to leave a lasting impact on the workplace and wider society.

Keywords:   boom, crisis, Ireland, labour market, Poland, mass migration, trade unions

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