INTOLERANT Gladstone residents have been reprimanded for a public Facebook conversation that described foreign languges as "gibberish", and complained about new arrivals failing to speak English in public.
The heated exchange took place on the Gladstone Open Discussion page, in response to a question about whether foreigners should be allowed to speak their own language in public.
One young woman wrote: "My motto is if u come to our country, speak our language as I would do the same in theirs. I hate going to the mall because of it, just want to punch them lol (laugh out loud)."
Another woman criticised: "They come across as ignorant with there (sic) English but they seem to understand the value of our money and how to count."
Gladstone Regional Council Acting Mayor Matt Burnett has hit back at the opinions, calling them "narrow-minded".
The GRC yesterday launched its Welcome to Gladstone handbook for international arrivals - and Mr Burnett was keen to promote Gladstone as a welcoming and tolerant community.
"I speak on behalf of council when I say that there's no room for racist comments within the Gladstone region.
"A few people on Facebook don't speak on behalf of the rest of the community."
Plenty of Gladstone residents on the Facebook page agreed, criticising the intolerant comments.
"If you went to live overseas for six months...would you speak their language constantly...and never speak English?" another woman pointed out.
Mr Burnett said GRC's booklet helped new arrivals feel welcome.
Couple love friendly community in city
IT'S been three months since Jackie McCabe and her partner moved to Gladstone from their homeland of Scotland - and the couple has just one complaint.
While they adore Queensland's sunny climate, it's been letting them down lately.
"I'm loving the weather. It's fantastic, other than the rain we've had," she said.
While her partner has found a job in Gladstone, Jackie has been gladly volunteering for community group Welcoming Intercultural Neighbours.
"It's given me an opportunity for something to do and it's helped me make a few new friends," she said.
Jackie is hoping to call Gladstone home for a few years, and she is thankful for the welcoming atmosphere she's found here.
"People are very friendly here and it's great to see the amount of support everyone gets," she said.
Teaming up with other WIN volunteers and new arrivals, she said the launch of the Welcome to the Gladstone Region booklet was a feather in the cap for our friendly city.
"It's difficult coming into a new community, but this booklet has everything you need to know," she said.
- Gladstone is "friendly, hospitable".
- New Australian residents may be entitled to free English language tuition.
- How to find a place to live, a job and enrol children at a school.
- Learn road rules and local laws.