A new article argues that migration has increased Swedish wages for nurses: “Agency by exit: Swedish nurses and the “Not below 24,000” movement”

In the article, Maiken Bjerga Kiil and Hege Merete Knutsen explores how agency is conditioned by structures and context that constrain and enable successful action. They find that individual acts of coping may enable and empower more collective actions of reworking and resistance. Kiil and Knutsens arguments are based on a case study of the “Not below 24,000” movement among nurse students and newly graduated nurses for acceptable entry wages in Sweden. The movement has succeeded in raising the entry wage for a number of newly graduated nurses. Individual agency by frustrated nurses has created a labour market with shortages of nurses in Sweden where new graduates are in high demand. Using collective agency the movement has exploited the situation and acquired power in several ways. Among the data material is 18 in-depth interviews with Swedish contract nurses in Norway; interviews and information in writing from managers in four Norwegian health enterprises and hospitals; and interviews in two temporary work agencies.

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