Housing crisis in Whitehorse

Housing crisis in Whitehorse I am a senior who has lived in the North for more than 42 years, many of them in Whitehorse. I made sure my home was fully paid for and free of any mortgage when it came to planning for my retirement. Recently, I requested

I am a senior who has lived in the North for more than 42 years, many of them in Whitehorse. I made sure my home was fully paid for and free of any mortgage when it came to planning for my retirement.

Recently, I requested two grants from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation that I am entitled to for very necessary repairs to my home, only to find out that they don’t have a budget for these grants.

This government’s plan for seniors is to warehouse them in apartments that have eliminated the CMHC’s budget for individual seniors.

Nothing is more unbearable than to be housed in a complex with a bunch of gossipy old folks with nothing else to do.

For the past 13 years, I have lived in a neighbourhood that’s mixed in age and we all help each other when asked.

It irritates me that I am entitled to up to $34,000 worth of repairs to my home, and can’t access these grants to hire a plumber or furnace man.

Now, I was told I could request a loan from the Yukon government, but that’s a loan that must be paid back and not a grant. Living on a very fixed income prevents me from seeking a loan.

Reverse mortgages do not exist in the Yukon, so I cannot access this source of funding. Emergency repair grants with CMHC exist in the rest of Canada, but not in the Yukon.

Supposedly, the Yukon government has a policy to keep seniors in their own homes as long as possible, but they seem to be more interested in housing us in apartment complexes than keeping us in our own homes.

In the area that I live, there is a wonderful natural park, McIntyre Creek, just out my back fence that I have enjoyed for years. The city wants to develop this land, which would destroy one of the city’s natural parks.

Whistle Bend subdivision has already disrupted our lives along with destroying migrating wildlife patterns in our neighborhood. We have always had bears, but this year was particularly bad because of the construction of this subdivision. This year we even had a family of four porcupines take up residency in our kids’ park.

This area was known as the Yukon College Endowment Land and was protected at one time.

We don’t need more lots to sell to wealthy buyers from Outside who want to take advantage of our generous health benefits in the Yukon.

We need funding for seniors who need their homes repaired, and for the homeless who need reasonably priced rental units.

Jill Walton


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

During our recent conversation, John Nicholson showed me snapshots of his time working on the Yukon riverboats 70 years ago. (Michael Gates)
History Hunter: Yukon man relives the riverboat days after seven decades

John Nicholson took summer work on Yukon steamers in the 1950s

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
YUKONOMIST: Another election, another anomaly

Monday’s “double-tie” election is generating some free publicity for the Yukon as Outside news agencies scramble to find someone to interview.

A cyclist rides along the Millenium Trail in downtown Whitehorse on a frigid Feb. 9. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of an e-bike bylaw that would designate how e-bike riders can use city trails. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
First two readings passed on Whitehorse e-bike bylaw

Delegate calls on city to consider age restrictions and further regulations

Whitehorse City Hall at its Steele Street entrance. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Change of plans approved for city hall

Project would see 1966 city hall demolished

A city map shows the property at 107 Range Road. The zoning is now in place for developers to proceed with plans for a Dairy Queen drive-thru. If plans proceed on schedule the new restaurant is anticipated to open in October. (Cyrstal Schick/Yukon News)
October opening eyed for Dairy Queen

Will depend on everything going according to plan

Joel Krahn/joelkran.com Hikers traverse the Chilkoot Trail in September 2015. Alaska side.
The Canadian side of the Chilkoot Trail will open for summer

The Canadian side of the Chilkoot Trail will open for summer Parks… Continue reading

A bulldozer levels piles of garbage at the Whitehorse landfill in January 2012. (Ian Stewart/Yukon News file)
Rural dump closures and tipping fees raise concern from small communities

The government has said the measures are a cost-cutting necessity

Letters to the editor.
Today’s mailbox: Hands of Hope, the quilt of poppies

Toilets are important Ed. note: Hands of Hope is a Whitehorse-based non-profit… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall (Yukon News file)
City news, briefly

A look at city council matters for the week of April 12

École Whitehorse Elementary Grade 7 students Yumi Traynor and Oscar Wolosewich participated in the Civix Student Vote in Whitehorse on April 12. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Yukon Student Vote chooses Yukon Party government; NDP take popular vote

The initiative is organized by national non-profit CIVIX

Yvonne Clarke is the newly elected Yukon Party MLA for Porter Creek Centre. (Submitted/Yukon Party)
Yvonne Clarke elected as first Filipina MLA in the Yukon Legislative Assembly

Clarke beat incumbent Liberal Paolo Gallina in Porter Creek Centre

Emily Tredger at NDP election night headquarters after winning the Whitehorse Centre riding. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Emily Tredger takes Whitehorse Centre for NDP

MLA-elect ready to get to work in new role

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Two new cases of COVID-19 variant identified in territory

“If variants were to get out of control in the Yukon, the impact could be serious.”

Most Read