Report

Refugees and regional settlement: win-win?

18 Jul 2005
Description

The debate about the regional settlement of refugees takes place within a number of important and at times conflicting policy arenas: humanitarian goals and obligations, population strategy and economic development of regional areas. In a paper for the Australian Social Policy Conference 2005, Janet Taylor discusses a recent Brotherhood of St Laurence study to explore the settlement experiences of two recent refugee groups (Iraqi and Sudanese) in selected areas of regional Victoria. Both the federal and the state governments have been developing policies to encourage refugees to settle in regional areas to assist the newcomers gain employment and to help build regional economies. While this sounds like a win-win scenario, the reality is more complex, writes Janet Taylor.

The debate about the regional settlement of refugees takes place within a number of important and at times conflicting policy arenas: humanitarian goals and obligations, population strategy and economic development of regional areas. Matters of concern include the nature of the refugee experience; the special needs of refugees as distinct from migrants; the availability of employment and support services; and the capacity of regional communities to build ties with newcomers of different backgrounds.

In the context of these policy issues, the Brotherhood of St Laurence has undertaken a recent study to explore the settlement experiences of two recent refugee groups (Iraqi and Sudanese) in selected areas of regional Victoria (Shepparton, Colac and Warrnambool) and to examine factors that promote settlement in such areas.

This paper for the Australian Social Policy Conference 2005 outlines changes in policy over recent years, presents the findings of the Brotherhood's study and considers implications for future policy.

Publication Details
Published year only: 
2005
11
Share
Share
Subject Areas
Advertisement