TOUGH TIMES: Gympie region's disadvantages seem to worsen with geography.
TOUGH TIMES: Gympie region's disadvantages seem to worsen with geography.

Sunny side to Struggle Street, but tougher to north and west

THE good life has gone south for Gympie region, according to latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

A new ABS report shows Gympie region is among the more disadvantaged communities in Queensland.

And that puts it among the poorest communities in Australia, even though Noosa, on the other side of an imaginary line not far to the south, is one of the nation's most advantaged areas, as is the Sunshine Coast, also on Gympie's southern boundary.

Things get worse the further north and west you go, the new figures seem to show.

Cherbourg, not far to the west, is Australia's most disadvantaged community, in terms of income, education, employment, occupation and housing.

Gympie Regional Council area is rated 79 out of Australia's 544 local authorities, on a scale in which the higher your community scores, the better off you are, generally speaking.

Noosa is among Queensland's top 10 most advantaged communities, ranked at 415 nationally on the ABS local authority scale, just ahead of the Sunshine Coast, next door, at 414.

Our southern neighbours are easily within the top 100 most advantaged regions in Australia. But head north and west and, for some reason, it is a different story.

Fraser Coast is seven points more disadvantaged than Gympie overall, with a ranking of 72, meaning it is the 72nd most disadvantaged council in Australia. South Burnett is at 68. Cherbourg is Number 1, but not in a good way.