Understanding free movement and migration in the European Union
Immigration and native worker shift
The majority of academic literature concludes that immigrants tend to be younger, healthier, and have lower levels of formal education than the average population of their destination country. This is a result of self-selection — that is, who tends to leave their home country, and who tends to stay.
Coupled with other disadvantages — such as employment discrimination, or lack of recognition of qualifications from their countries of origin — these characteristics often mean that that immigrants are more likely to work in so-called ‘lower-skilled’ jobs, which often involve more physical labour (for example, moving heavy objects) and therefore have a higher injury risk. A corresponding impact is that native workers move into jobs with lower physical risk (such as office jobs).