Caring for Refugees: Questioning the Public-Private Dichotomy in Canadian Resettlement

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McNally, Rachel Kaye




While the Canadian refugee resettlement system has recently gained national and international attention following the resettlement of Syrian refugees, there are concerns that the government is privatizing its responsibilities. This thesis uses care ethics to understand the relationship between public and private actors within Canada's resettlement system. It questions a dichotomy between "public" and "private" resettlement and presents a more interdependent relationship between actors, revealing care relations that are often hidden. It illustrates how in the "public" Government-Assisted Refugee program, NGOs, volunteers, and sponsors play critical roles. Likewise, in the "private" sponsorship program, the government is involved in a number of substantive ways. By critically engaging with power hierarchies in relations of care, this thesis shows how different actors exercise power and experience vulnerability in different ways. It concludes by considering implications for contemporary discussions on resettlement and for Canada's efforts to promote refugee sponsorship to other countries.


Political Science




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

Thesis Degree Level: 


Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Political Science

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Theses and Dissertations

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