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Rebordering Britain & Britons after Brexit

Brexit, a Hostile Environment, the EU Settlement Scheme and Rupture in the Migration Projects of Central and Eastern European Migrants in Northern Ireland

Abstract

This article examines the changing migration projects of Central and Eastern European migrants in Northern Ireland. It sets out the context for settlement scheme applications, linking it to broader hostile environment policies in the UK. It explores the dynamic nature of people's migration projects and how these have been challenged in the context of Brexit and the EU Settlement Scheme. The paper discusses the ruptures in migrants' narratives in relation to how they envision their future in Northern Ireland and their countries of origin, with some moving towards indeterminacy and some searching for fixity/stability in their migration projects. It examines how the Northern Irish context - and the question of the Irish border specifically - adds an additional layer of complexity to the migrants' shifting future imaginaries. The paper draws on my covert research and in-depth interviews with CEE migrants, where consent was given retrospectively. It discusses the role of the researcher in cutting the covert/overt continuum and ethical dilemmas in the field.

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Journal

CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPEAN MIGRATION REVIEW

Author

Marta Kempny (United Kingdom)

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