About the study

‘Everyday Bordering’, migrant families and social care

In a global world, many people move – migrate – from the country in which they were born to live in another country. They do so for many reasons, including, to improve their opportunities for education or work, to join other family members, or to escape persecution and conflict. 

In the UK, the Government sees migration to the UK as an issue that needs to be controlled. This control takes place at borders – for example, airports and ports – but also in people’s everyday lives once they are living in the UK. This is because there are complex laws that state who is ‘legally’ able to live in the UK, what they are then able to do and the support they are able to access. This can mean that a person is entitled to different levels, or types of social care* support, according to their migration status. 

Social care workers may have to check if people that have migrated to the UK are entitled to access their services. This has become more common since the introduction of the 2014 and 2016 Immigration Acts and researchers, Yuval Davies, Georgie Wemyss and Kathryn Cassidy, have described  these checking processes as ‘Everyday Bordering’.

Previous studies in the UK have focused on the impact of ‘Everyday Bordering’ on higher education, health care, housing, and the lives of some groups of ‘migrants’.  The ‘Everyday Bordering in the UK’ study is the first to explore how social care* workers and the migrant families with whom they work experience ‘Everyday Bordering’.

*In this project, ’social care’ refers to the provision of social support, protection or personal care for families, children, young people or adults.