Do Immigrants Trust Trade Unions? A Study of 18 European Countries Articles uri icon

publication date

  • March 2020

start page

  • 3

end page

  • 26


  • 1


  • 58

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0007-1080

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1467-8543


  • Migrants form growing proportions of national workforces in advanced capitalist societies. Yet little is known about their attitudes towards the principal agents of worker representation in their host countries, the trade unions, much less via cross‐national research. Using European Values Survey data, we redress this imbalance by examining migrants' levels of trust in unions, compared to native‐born. We find higher levels of trust in unions by migrants (compared to native‐born) in general and especially by migrants during their first decades after arrival and whose countries of origin are characterized by poor quality institutions. These findings have significant implications for unionization strategies towards migrants, especially given received wisdom portraying migrants as indifferent or distrustful towards unions.