Temporary Migrant Nurses in Australia: Sites and Sources of Precariousness
(2013) 0(0) The Economic and Labour Relations Review 1-24.
25 Pages Posted: 13 Feb 2017
Date Written: February 10, 2017
Temporary migrant workers are widely regarded as a precarious group of workers. This precariousness is often traced back to the sphere of employment, though recent research also points to the implications of the limited rights entailed by temporary migrant status. This article draws on empirical work among registered nurses who have participated in the Australian 457 visa scheme – the major programme for temporary migrant workers in Australia. Using a range of empirical sources, including in-depth interviews with 26 temporary migrant nurses, we examine whether these nurses experience precariousness and locate the sites and sources of precariousness. The article draws attention to the importance of the regulatory context that defines different pathways from the country of departure to employment in the Australian healthcare system. We suggest that, although temporary migrant nurses are well integrated within the healthcare workforce in terms of formal wages and conditions, other stages in their migration pathways can be associated with precariousness. This in turn has significant impact on experiences at work and outside the workplace.
Keywords: Migrant workers, migration, migration pathways, nurse migration, precarious migrant status, precarious work, s457 visa, temporary skilled migration
JEL Classification: J15, J48, J61
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation