News and Events

Majority migrant workers in 3-D jobs: dirty-dangerous-difficult

The European Commission encourages flexible work patterns and labour mobility. The Commission expects net labour migration in the coming years. However, a majority of migrant workers are employed in labour-intensive, poorly paid and dangerous 3-D ('dirty-dangerous-difficult') jobs.

That is what Jan Cremers (AIAS and Tilburg University) points out in the 13th issue of the health and safety at work magazine HesaMag, published by the ETUI and entitled Construction works at the mercy of social dumping.

Recruitment of migrant workers takes place in the shady segment of the market, with no commitment to occupational health and safety. Migrant workers figure among the workers with the highest risks, because of poor introduction, lack of protective equipment and high work pressure. The EU internal market endangers thus the health of the people who actually embody the ideals behind this internal market.

The EU must prevent labour becoming a simple production factor at will to deploy, where profit is greatest. As enshrined in the 1989 Community Charter of the Fundamental Social Rights of Workers, the improvement of occupational safety and health should be prominent on the EU's agenda.