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The long-term financial and psychological resettlement outcomes of pre-migration trauma and post-settlement difficulties in resettled refugees.

Authors
  • O'Donnell, Alexander W1
  • Stuart, Jaimee1
  • O'Donnell, Karlee J1
  • 1 School of Applied Psychology, Griffith University, Queensland, Australia. , (Australia)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Social science & medicine (1982)
Publication Date
Jul 29, 2020
Volume
262
Pages
113246–113246
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2020.113246
PMID: 32768775
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Humanitarian crises and ongoing conflicts around the world have created large populations of refugees who require permanent resettlement. The often-difficult pathway to resettlement for refugees places them at elevated risks for ongoing psychological and financial problems, creating an imperative to investigate the longterm outcomes for refugees as they resettle. The current study explores how adversities before and after resettlement impact the psychological distress and experiences of financial hardship over the course of four years postsettlement for a large group of resettled refugees in Australia. Data from the first four waves of the Building New Life in Australia (BNLA) study (N = 1509) were used. Recently resettled refugees completed measures of pre-migration trauma and post-settlement difficulties at the initial data collection wave as well as measures of psychological distress and financial hardship across all four waves. Through a random intercept cross-lagged panel model, a time-sensitive bi-directional relationship between psychological distress and financial hardship was found. Additionally, early post-settlement difficulties were indirectly related to both psychological distress and financial hardship over time. In contrast, pre-migration trauma did not significantly predict later outcomes. These results illustrate that trauma focused interventions may be insufficient on their own for assisting resettled refugees in this context. As such, our findings highlight the crucial importance of early identification and responsiveness to the variety of initial difficulties, such as language and housing problems, that may be experienced by resettled refugees to mitigate against subsequent psychological and financial difficulties in the long-term. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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