News

Refugees need more than Fraser Coast can provide, says Mayor

REFUGEES should be settled in the nation's capital cities instead of the Fraser Coast due to a lack of employment opportunities and cultural and religious services, Mayor Gerard O'Connell said.

He said while he understood the atrocities facing refugees, the Fraser Coast was not appropriate for resettlement because the region could not accommodate their needs.

His comments have disappointed an organisation set up to promote cultural harmony, whose organiser believes the region should welcome them.

Mayor O'Connell's comments come after Western Downs Mayor Ray Brown offered to house 1500 Syrian refugees in Dalby, Chinchilla, Miles, Wandoan and Tara.

He said there was no plan for the Fraser Coast Regional Council to offer housing to accommodate some of the 12,000 refugees the Federal Government has granted asylum.

"There's been no request and no suggestion," he said.

"We should be looking at not just detention centres or sub-standard accommodation but be in places that can support them as a community," he said.

"In fairness to the refugees, there has to be a proper assimilation and support - where there could be jobs.

"(I am) not pushing the problem elsewhere.

"That's probably why capital cities are best served because of their capacity."

Fraser Coast Hope for Humanity president Amanda Edwards said it was our role to help refugees, no matter what side of politics you followed.

"We need to support other human beings in crisis," she said.

"We're a very safe environment and they're fleeing from absolute horrors in their own country.

"Show them the type of security Australia can offer and the Fraser Coast would be a wonderful place that doesn't have that sort of any instability or violence.

"We could absolutely show them how humans are supposed to be treated."

Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said regional cities that did not want to house refugees would not be forced to.

"If council said it wasn't going to be cooperative then clearly we won't use the refugees as any kind of ransom," he said.

"It is a hard task and it would be hard for them to settle into a new country and it is important that the whole community is on board.

"It's genuinely about trying to support them to be a part of Australia and part of our community and getting them jobs so they can work.

Topics:  gerard o'connell, hope for humanity, ray brown




Some of our major drug busts on the Fraser Coast

The ecstasy pills and a white substance found in a speeding driver's car.

Only this week 2500 marijuana plants were found at a property

The biggest seizure 'in living memory': police

'We believe we've put a good dent in the drug trade...'

'RVs promise much if we attract them': Letter

Visiting grey nomads bring wealth to communities when they shop for life's necessities.

I am concerned that some councillors still oppose

Latest deals and offers

Johnny Depp 'deeply respects' Amber Heard

Celebrity

Amber Heard gives away $7 million settlement to charity

The true cost of 60 Minutes debacle revealed

It's a bill that would make even a silk tied barrister blush

Maryborough's little link to Hollywood heart-throb Thor

STAR VISIT: Hollywood heartthrob Chris Hemsworth visits Craig Box and his daughter Violet Box at Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in Brisbane. Craig's family originate from Maryborough.

One little girl was lucky enough to meet the movie star

Kirk Douglas is defiant, fierce and still standing

VETERAN ACTOR: Kirk Douglas has had a long and varied career.

Kirk Douglas has out-lived almost all his contemporaries

The Hard Word reviews Kyzer Soze

Kyzer Soze are playing Brisbane tomorrow at the Crowbar in Fortitude Valley. Photo Contributed

Kyzer Soze summon the evil for this mighty slab of death metal

Britney Spears 'almost drowned' in Hawaii

Britney Spears has revealed she 'almost drowned' while on holiday

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

$100m plan for Curtis Island 'world class' luxury resort

$100 million resort: Top views at Turtle Street at Curtis Island.

"At the moment we think it meets all the town planning approvals.”

Coast building approvals at seven-year high: report

The the 2015/16 Development Indicators Annual Highlights Report documents local development activity that took place during the last financial year.

New report shows increasing development on the Sunshine Coast

Top honours for Mackay and Whitsunday builders

The Kerrisdale Gardens property from Paynter Dixon Queensland which won them Project of the Year.

Mackay and Whitsunday builders awarded top honours last night.