Yukon is growing and our need to prepare for a larger population is complicated and more difficult than most jurisdictions in Canada. We are a huge territory with a small population. The cost of providing priority services alone, on a per capita basis, is very high. Our administration costs are much higher than we alone can afford, thus unsustainable without strong support from our southern neighbours. A thank you to Ottawa might be long overdue.
Our current Yukon government has a lot to be thanked for. YTG has been improving our personal safety by implementing a comprehensive Substance Abuse Plan as well as the Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act (SCAN) to combat drug trafficking. A replacement correctional facility is under construction to better support community rehabilitation services to our residents. The social assistance program has been increased by $2 million including food benefits to better support struggling neighbours. A 30-unit affordable housing project is under construction in Whitehorse, again to meet immediate needs. Much needed seniors’ facilities are being built in Haines Junction, Watson Lake, Teslin and Faro.
A recent Health Care Review has recommended a 10-year plan to ensure the sustainability of our health systems. Child-care staff wage contributions have increased 100 per cent.
Our environment will definitely reap long-term benefits from the reduction and gradual elimination of oil-fired community generators through the further development of the Mayo and Mayo B dams (green energy), as well as the extension of the Whitehorse-Aishihik-Faro electrical grid. Brownouts and blackouts may become only a memory. Finally, Dawson and Carmacks will have sewage treatment systems. This is what we have been asking for years and years.
Our future and our global future will see increasing development of adaptations and supportive solutions to effects of global warming through our Yukon Cold Climate Innovation Centre and Climate Change Centre of Excellence at our Yukon College.
Evidence of global warming is growing faster in the North, so common sense tells us we should be involved and now we are.
I can see hope emerging, as a direct result of our Yukon government vision, today and tomorrow for our children.
Safety, health and our environment are the basis of personal opportunity in our world and from my point of view, our government has been spending its time wisely.