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Migrant Workers in Rural Scotland: “Going to the Middle of Nowhere”

Author(s): Birgit Jentsch | Philomena de Lima | Brian MacDonald

Journal: International Journal of Multicultural Societies
ISSN 1817-4574

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 35;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Keywords: rural migration | international migration in Scotland | migration policies | labour migration | rural migrant workers

This paper explores the under-researched area of internationalmigration and rural areas. It examines what the possible implicationsare of commonly cited “identifiers of rural labour markets” for themigrant population. Moreover, recent trends in internationalmigration to the Highlands and Islands provide the context in whichresearch findings on employers’ and migrant workers’ experiences inthis region are presented. The paper concludes that substantialnumbers of migrant workers will remain a long-term feature of thisrural area. With appropriate interventions by the relevant authorities, rural communities may recognise the contributions by migrant workers more than those made by many “life quality” internalmigrants in the past. However, issues of securing “high-qualityemployment” are as pertinent for the migrant population as they arefor other rural community members, many of whom have left theircommunities to find employment elsewhere.
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