Precarious Posted Migration: The Case of Romanian Construction and Meat-Industry Workers in Germany
Drawing on in-depth interviews with Romanian workers posted in the German construction and meat-processing industries, with representatives of German unions and with migrant advisers, and on ethnographic work, this study examines precarity in posted employment. Firstly, the paper describes the precarious circumstances of Romanians posted in the construction and meat-industry sectors in Germany. Secondly, analysing the Romanians' own perspectives, it shows that low wages in the country of origin, often associated with insecurity and poor working conditions, drive these workers to engage in posted work. Their lack of knowledge of the German language prevents them from finding and carrying out standard jobs in Germany and, thus, determines that they remain in posted employment. Finally, the paper argues that posted workers experience different layers of precarity in the country of destination. It shows that those under contract with various companies for short periods of time are more precarious than de facto posted workers and workers with long-term informal agreements with one single employer. (original abstract)
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