EU citizens have a right to live and work in another EU country. That fundamental right benefits individual workers but also, through their skills, the economies of the countries where they go to work.
EU nationals working in another EU country should, in theory, enjoy equal treatment with locals in access to jobs, working conditions, social welfare and tax.
But in practice, many of the 10.7 million EU migrant workers face a range of discriminatory practices.
For example, governments or businesses may set discriminatory recruitment rules, quotas, or nationality requirements for specific types of jobs. Pay and promotion rules might not be the same as for nationals. Experience and professional qualifications might not be recognised in the same way, if at all.
These barriers serve to make more people reclutant to go and work in another EU country .
In response the Commission is proposing measures to make it easier for workers to exercise their EU work rights in place now for some 50 years and guaranteed by the EU’s treaties and and the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The measures would require EU countries to:
– provide official channels for EU migrant workers – and their employers – to get information, assistance and advice about these rights.
– establish means of redress when workers from other EU countries are discriminated against.
– allow labour unions and other organisations to launch administrative or legal procedures on behalf of individuals whose rights are not upheld.
By informing people, the measures would help people exercise their rights more effectively. A 2010 survey found 67% of people feel they are not well informed or are not at all informed of their rights as EU citizens.