Letter to the Editor

It’s time for action Re Landlord, tenants trapped in Slum, published October 24th: I used to work as a court agent in the Provincial Court of…

It’s time for action

Re Landlord, tenants trapped in Slum, published October 24th:

I used to work as a court agent in the Provincial Court of Alberta, small claims division.

I represented many landlords and some tenants with respect to claims they had regarding residential and commercial tenancies.

The Residential Tenancies Act in Alberta is equivalent to the Yukon Landlord and Tenant Act.

The Yukon Landlord and Tenant Act is silent on many issues that are dealt with in other provinces’ and territories’ landlord/tenant legislation.

One example would be the lack of a provision for a minimum length of a month-to-month tenancy.

In Alberta, a landlord who enters into a month-to-month tenancy agreement cannot evict their tenant without “just cause,” such as a breach of the tenancy contract.

In Yukon, a tenant can be evicted without “just cause” after only a two-month tenancy.

The landlord need only provide one full month’s notice, which can be delivered to the tenant the day before the tenant is required to make their second rental payment.

This results in a tenant being forced to move, which financially penalizes the tenant as the cost of moving house is very high.

In many cases, tenants are renting because they lack the financial means to own, and the cost of moving several times a year further marginalizes the tenant.

There is no accountability required on the part of the landlord. No good reason is required.

I believe that there needs to be an amendment to our legislation to allow a tenant a period of 90 days notice to vacate, if the landlord does not have “just cause.”

This is only one part of the legislation that I believe needs to be amended.

I was a little puzzled by Daljeet Dhillon’s resentment at being called a slumlord.

The definition of a slumlord from Merriam Webster’s online dictionary is: a landlord who receives unusually large profits from substandard properties.

If the filthy carpet in the common areas is 20 years old, and if tenants were not properly compensated or housed during the 13-day period where hot water was not available, is that not substandard?

I know that if I had been her tenant without hot water for two weeks I would expect my landlord to have provided alternate temporary housing, until repairs could be made.

If the landlord failed to provide me with the benefits of my rental contract and I had been forced to suffer the loss of hot water, I would demand financial compensation for the services (hot water!) I had paid the landlord to provide.

I would be interested to know how Dhillon compensated her tenants.

I would like to call out to my fellow Yukoners who feel trapped by the landlord/tenant legislation in this territory. I am forming and organizing an action committee for change of the Yukon Landlord and Tenant Act.

If you have had an experience renting in the Yukon where you felt trapped by the legislation, or lack thereof, please respond in confidence to rentingrights@gmail.com.

At the very least, I plan to compile Yukoners’ stories and provide a summary to the legislature, in an effort to have the legislation reviewed and amended.

Erin Giesbrecht


Not Chicago

Re The get-out-of-jail-free card?, published Friday:

Once again, I am disappointed with the standard of journalism (or lack thereof) exhibited by the Yukon News.

A simple study in the chronology of this case would have revealed there was no relationship between the story published in the previous issue of the News and the court’s decision to grant supervised bail to the man in question.

I would encourage the News staff to investigate the standards of journalism that would bring credit to their publication and perhaps even make a commitment to adhere to the ethical standards of the Canadian Association of Journalists (http://www.eagle.ca/caj/principles/principles-statement-2002.htm).

I can assure the public that, regardless of the inflammatory headlines and articles that have been (in my estimation) recklessly published, there is a very carefully administered due process for determining eligibility for residency at the Adult Resource Centre and bribery is not part of the process.

I am disturbed that the News would craft such a composition of half-truths and cut-off quotes in order to sell papers at the risk of bringing danger to the life of a Canadian citizen.

It was brave of the inmate to give the true side of his experience at Whitehorse Correctional Centre. It is deplorable that the News would follow it up by creating a story that makes the inmate look like he was “paid off” by correctional staff in a perversion of justice, especially when the young man may not be skilled in handling interviews.

I have a distant relative who is a prominent writer for a major Chicago newspaper. After sharing with him some of the “news” the News has published, he could only shake his head and say he or anyone else working for his paper would be fired instantly if they submitted such stories.

Only in the Yukon, eh?


Such articles do nothing to alleviate homelessness, suffering or enhance the safety of the community.

Robert Sessford, captain, executive director & corps officer, the Salvation Army


An elected senator for the Yukon

With the election of Stephen Harper’s second government and his continued preference to appoint only senators who have been elected by the public, Yukon has a clear opportunity to bolster its democratic representation in Ottawa while contributing to much-needed reform of our federal government.

Unlike Canada’s provinces, Yukon has only two representatives in the federal government in Ottawa — one member of Parliament and one senator. It has been almost two years since Ione Christensen resigned her Senate seat, and Yukon has remained underrepresented since. It has been abundantly clear that Harper would prefer to appoint an elected senator, and all Yukoners should embrace this unprecedented opportunity to democratically choose their representative in the upper house.

I urge the public, and all members of the Yukon legislature, regardless of their political affiliation, to work hastily and constructively toward the passage of elected senatorial selection legislation, similar to that passed in Alberta almost 20 years ago, and to hold our first historic Senate election in the immediate future.

Yukoners should take advantage of this rare opportunity to double their elected representation in Ottawa by encouraging their MLAs to support elected-senator legislation.

Darcy M. Tkachuk

Marsh Lake

Advice from Watson Lake

The Rolling Stones put it very aptly when they said, “You can’t always get what you want.”

It seems Veronica Germaine has a choice. She can put up with the situation in Whitehorse Correctional Centre or she can go Outside and get help.

I find it hard to believe that Germaine does not know the difference between right and wrong. She knows it is wrong to abuse alcohol, substances and people. She knows stealing is wrong.

Going out for treatment may very well be an opening to a new life for her, but she will have to take responsibility for her actions.

None of us like to do that.

In an ideal society, the Yukon would have a resident psychiatrist and hospital to treat mental illness. Until we do, there are choices to be made.

I hope Germaine chooses to get the help she needs.

Dale Worsfold

Watson Lake

Just Posted

Lorraine Kuhn is seen with one of the many volleyball teams she coached. (Photo submitted by Sport Yukon)
The Yukon Sports Hall of Fame inducts the late Lorraine Kuhn

Lorraine Kuhn became the newest member of the Yukon Sports Hall of Fame for her work in growing volleyball amongst other sports

File Photo
A Yukon judge approved dangerous offender status for a man guilty of a string of assaults in 2020.
Yukon judge sentences dangerous offender to indefinite prison term

Herman Peter Thorn, 51, was given the sentence for 2020 assaults, history of violence

Crystal Schick/ Yukon News A former residential school in the Kaska Dena community of Lower Post will be demolished on June 21. Crystal Schick/ Yukon News
Lower Post residential school demolition postponed

On June 21, the old residential school in Lower Post will be demolished and new ground on a multi-cultural centre will be broken

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley announced 29 new COVID-19 cases on June 19 and community transmission among unvaccinated individuals. (Yukon News file)
Yukon logs record-high 29 new COVID-19 cases

F.H. Collins prom attendees and some Porter Creek Grade 9 students are instructed to self-isolate as community transmission sweeps through unvaccinated populations

Willow Brewster, a paramedic helping in the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre, holds a swab used for the COVID-19 test moments before using it on Nov. 24. The Yukon government is reopening the drive-thru option on June 18. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Drive-up COVID-19 testing opening June 18 in Whitehorse

The drive-up testing will be open from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. everyday and increase testing capacity by 33 spots

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

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council at its June 14 meeting

Murray Arsenault sits in the drivers seat of his 1975 Bricklin SV1 in Whitehorse on June 16. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Bringing the 1975 Bricklin north

Murray Arsenault remembers his dad’s Bricklin, while now driving his own

A presumptive COVID case was found at Seabridge Gold’s 3 Aces project. (file photo)
Presumptive COVID-19 case reported at mine in southeast Yukon

A rapid antigen rest found a presumptive COVID case on an incoming individual arriving at the 3Aces project

Jonathan Antoine/Cabin Radio
Flooding in Fort Simpson on May 8.
Fort Simpson asked for military help. Two people showed up.

FORT SIMPSON—Residents of a flooded Northwest Territories village expected a helping hand… Continue reading

A woman was rescued from the Pioneer Ridge Trail in Alaska on June 16. (Photo courtesy/AllTrails)
Alaska hiker chased off trail by bears flags down help

ANCHORAGE (AP)—An Alaska hiker who reported needing help following bear encounters on… Continue reading

Two participants cross the finish line at the City of Whitehorse Kids Triathlon on June 12 with Mayor Dan Curtis on hand to present medals. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
2021 Kids’ Triathlon draws 76 young athletes

Youth ages five to 14 swim, run and bike their way to finish line

NDP MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq rises in the House of Commons, in Ottawa on May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Unacceptable’ that Inuk MP felt unsafe in House of Commons, Miller says

OTTAWA—It’s a “sad reflection” on Canada that an Inuk MP feels she’s… Continue reading

Lily Witten performs her Canadian Nationals beam routine on June 14. John Tonin/Yukon News
Three Yukon gymnasts break 20-year Nationals absence

Bianca Berko-Malvasio, Maude Molgat and Lily Witten competed at the Canadian Nationals – the first time in 20 years the Yukon’s been represented at the meet

Most Read