Migrants from Eastern Europe have often been vilified in the media, and any increase in migration to the UK from the EU8 has resulted in scaremongering from the major British newspapers, who often whip up fears about increases in crime and loss of jobs as a result of the migration.
According to a report published by the ONS in July 2017, there are approximately 1.4 million Eastern European nationals residing in the UK, 80% of which are here for work. The largest of this group is the Polish community, with 916,000 Polish migrants living in the UK. This is followed by approximately 170,000 Lithuanians living in the UK.
The type of jobs that this particular group of migrants undertake whilst in the UK varies, but it’s thought that the UK food production industry has been largely dependent on migrants from EU8 countries as they make up 25% of the workforce in this industry. In addition, approximately a third of workers from the Czech Republic are in banking careers and 83,200 Eastern Europeans work in the National health Service.
Clearly Eastern Europeans provide great value to the UK economy and should not be put off from coming to work in the UK. Currently, non-EU nationals who wish to come and work in the UK as unskilled workers are unable to, as the Tier 3 Unskilled Worker visa is not currently being issued. Skilled workers looking for those more sought after jobs, many of which may be in high demand, must obtain a Tier 2 Skilled Worker visa. Currently, EU nationals will not need to obtain a visa, however this could all change after Brexit.
For more details on how to obtain the right visa for your visit to the UK, especially after the country leaves the European Union, take a look at the Immigration Advice Service, whose expert lawyers can give you the best advice possible to help in your successful application.