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Settlement Patterns of African Refugee Communities in Southeast Queensland

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Over 4000 African refugees have resettled in Queensland through the Australian government's Humanitarian Program. Research on the settlement geography of this immigrant group is, however, limited. The present study is set within the context of research and debates concerning the residential concentration and/or dispersion patterns of immigrant settlement in Australia. The paper investigates the settlement and secondary migration geography of eight African refugee communities in Southeast Queensland. Discrepancies are identified between the official data and the actual distribution according to community members' views obtained via focus group surveys and interviews. Preliminary results indicate that there is a relatively high rate of secondary migration in the African communities. The paper also discusses the two key factors underpinning this secondary migration: housing and social networks. These findings have implications for settlement service providers, particularly in the area of housing.

Keywords: African refugees; Australia; Southeast Queensland; refugee settlement; secondary migration

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Queensland University of Technology, Australia

Publication date: 2009-03-01

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