There may be 20 million refugees around the world today. They have left their own countries to escape oppression, hardship and violence, many seeking a new existence in countries they perceive as upholding humanitarian rights. For most of these their search for freedom ends in camps in countries of first asylum. There they wait - often for years - for offers of permanent resettlement in the North. This book explores how two countries, Britain and Canada, traditionally ted for their humanitarian treatment of refugees have responded to the refugee crisis of the 1980s and '90s, how they have recast their admission criteria, developed reception policies and constructed resettlement programmes. It also discusses the covert and overt links between refugee policy and racism and traces these links back into history, and it describes how policy and the nature of forced migration shape the long-term prospects of the fortunate few refugees accepted for resettlement in the West.