Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

First Advisor

Colette M. Taylor

Second Advisor

Trenia Walker

Third Advisor

Sunaree Marshall


Everyone deserves fair access to housing; yet, homelessness and housing insecurity in refugee and asylee populations continues to be an issue. This dissertation studied lived experiences of refugees and asylees located in King County, Washington. Specifically, we examined experiences about refugees and asylees accessing housing programs and information in the resettlement process. This study provided information to further understand housing programs available and how they are accessed by resettled individuals in King County, Washington to mitigate homelessness in the population and to increase access to stable housing. Additionally, the study provided further understanding of barriers to accessing stable housing, while also presenting opportunity to improve quality of life for refugees and asylees. This study used an emancipatory qualitative approach with focus groups of employees from organizations providing housing services and information. Data collected were from focus groups with 10 participants who were working with housing providers in King County at the time of the study. Analysis of Research Question 1 established four major themes, including (a) affordable housing, (b) education, (c) system navigation, and (d) barriers. Research Question 2 revealed three major themes, including (a) immediate housing and overall needs, (b) long-term housing and overall needs, and (c) barriers in access and gaps in essential services. Research Question 3 revealed three major themes, including (a) additional housing services, (b) housing coordination, and (c) cross-sector collaborations. Study findings produced multiple recommendations for refugee and asylee housing services and information access. Primary recommendations for access and increased opportunity for self-sufficiency and integration are centered on extended case management, coordination of services and cross-sector collaboration, and transitional housing provisions. Recommendations for future research include (a) documenting lived experiences of refugees and asylees, inclusive of individuals who are not proficient in English; (b) interactions and connections between service organizations providing housing information and services in King County, Washington; (c) effects of extended services and support beyond the initial 6 months; and (d) research on empowerment and refugees and asylees is needed.