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Frans Pennings

In 1992 the Treaty of Maastricht was adopted, that introduced inter alia a new concept: EU citizenship. It provided that EU citizens can rely on the rights ensured by the treaties and on free movement (Articles 20 and 21 TFEU). Since until that Treaty the provisions on free movement and non-discrimination on ground of nationality had been limited to workers and self-employed, this meant an important extension of rights. For workers, the Treaty guaranteed, already from the establishment of the EEC, that they had to be treated equally as national workers. Requiting equal treatment for economically non-active persons is much more problematic. If, for instance, anyone from the moment of entering a Member State would be entitled to social assistance, this might lead, it is feared, to ‘benefit tourism’ and that would clearly overstretch the solidarity of the host State. For this reason the combination of mobile EU citizens and social rights constitutes a politically highly sensitive area.

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Frans Pennings

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Frans Pennings

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Edited by Frans Pennings and Martin Seeleib-Kaiser

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Edited by Frans Pennings and Martin Seeleib-Kaiser

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Martin Seeleib-Kaiser and Frans Pennings

Social rights are highly contested and historically were closely linked to the establishment of nation states. Freedom of movement and the introduction of EU citizenship have eroded the sovereignty of EU Member States in limiting access to social rights to their citizens. In this chapter we introduce the main issues associated with intra-EU migration and social rights as well as provide an overview of the book.

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Martin Seeleib-Kaiser and Frans Pennings

This chapter draws conclusions from these various dimensions and highlights that the dimension of social rights as part of EU citizenship has not been stable over the years.

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EU Citizenship and Social Rights

Entitlements and Impediments to Accessing Welfare

Edited by Frans Pennings and Martin Seeleib-Kaiser

In the 1990s, the Maastricht Treaty introduced the right to free movement for EU citizens. In practice, however, there are substantial barriers to making use of this right, particularly to integration and to accessing the social and welfare rights available. This is particularly true when it comes to accessing social rights, such as social assistance, housing benefit, study grants and health care. This book provides a detailed description and thorough analysis of these barriers, in both law and practice.