Longtime Ontario Green looks to represent Yukon

The first person to put his name forward as a possible federal candidate for the Green Party is new to the Yukon but not to Green politics. Frank de Jong was the first leader of the Green Party of Ontario.

The first person to put his name forward as a possible federal candidate for the Green Party is new to the Yukon but not to Green politics.

Frank de Jong was the first leader of the Green Party of Ontario. He spent 16 years at the helm before stepping down in 2009.

A teacher with 25 years experience in Ontario, de Jong took a job last August at Del Van Gorder School in Faro.

“I’ve been a teacher in Ontario for a long time and I thought I should see some more of Canada. So I applied to jobs and was offered a job in Faro. I thought this was a wonderful opportunity to see the Yukon.”

He teaches shop, music and math. “And other things too. In small schools people have to be flexible.”

De Jong said he decided to wade back into politics after getting to know the territory.

“I’m so impressed with the Yukon. It’s a fabulous place. It’s a very green jurisdiction. I’ve fallen in love with it so much and I want to stay here for many, many years and I thought I should stand up and speak. “

The Green Party has not announced when it will be voting to pick its next candidate on the federal ballot.

De Jong knows he is a newcomer to the territory, but hopes that his experience will help Yukoners see him as a viable candidate.

Issues around the Peel watershed and the federal bill S-6 that would amend the territory’s environmental assessment process will all need a strong Yukon voice in Ottawa, he said.

De Jong, who supports protecting the Peel watershed, believes the fight over the Peel could become a federal concern if it continues through the courts.

“If the Yukon Party appeals to the Supreme Court of Canada then it very much becomes a Canadian issue,” he said.

Meanwhile, Yukon First Nations have threatened to sue if the changes proposed in S-6 go forward.

“An MP would have direct influence on a number of those issues,” he said.

De Jong has strong feelings about how jurisdictions get money from Ottawa.

“We pay a lot of taxes in Yukon and those tax dollars all go to the federal government and then they come back as transfer payments,” he said.

“So we’re made to look like some economic basket case, yet we generate a lot of tax dollars here which should stay here and not go to Ottawa. Then we wouldn’t feel like we were so dependant on Ottawa.”

De Jong says we should change the way taxes are handled.

He says the territorial and provincial governments should collect based on the value of land and resources as opposed to collecting income tax from businesses or individuals.

“Companies should be paying for the use of land and the use of resources, but companies should not be paying income taxes and neither should people,” he said.

“Why would we punish companies for being financially successful? Why do we punish people for having a job? As soon as you get a job the government says good for you, you got a job, now we’re going to take a third of your salary. It’s not right.”

De Jong said he supports programs like health care and education, but calls it is a “question of how the accounting works.”

If people didn’t pay income taxes they could be paid less and have the same take home pay, he said.

“It’s just a question of why are we cycling these dollars through Ottawa?” he said.

The federal Green Party fared well in the Yukon during the last federal election. John Streicker placed third, but took nearly 19 per cent of the votes. Next to Elizabeth May, who won her seat in British Columbia, he earned the second highest share of the votes of any Green candidate.

Streicker has said he will not be running for the Greens this time.

“John has done a fabulous job of raising the profile of the party. It’s considered a viable political choice here, and because of John it’s winnable now for the Green Party in Yukon.”

Contact Ashley Joannou at


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

Just Posted

A proposed Official Community Plan amendment would designate a 56.3-hectare piece of land in Whistle Bend currently designated as green space, as urban residential use. Whitehorse city council will vote on the second reading of the Official Community Plan amendment on Dec. 7. (Courtesy City of Whitehorse)
Future area of Whistle Bend considered by council

Members set to vote on second reading for OCP change

The City of Whitehorse’s projected deficit could be $100,000 more than originally predicted earlier this year. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City deficit could be just over $640,000 this year

Third quarter financial reports presented to council

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse on Oct. 30. Masks became mandatory in the Yukon for anyone five years old and older as of Dec. 1 while in public spaces. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
As mask law comes into effect, premier says $500 fines will be last resort

The territory currently has 17 active cases of COVID-19

Crystal Schick/Yukon News file
Ranj Pillai, minister of economic development, during a press conference on April 1.
Government rejects ATAC mining road proposal north of Keno City

Concerns from the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun were cited as the main reason for the decision


Wyatt’s World for Dec. 2, 2020

The new Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation council elected Dec. 1. (Submitted)
Little Salmon Carmacks elects new chief, council

Nicole Tom elected chief of Little Salmon Carcmacks First Nation

Submitted/Yukon News file
Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to the unsolved homicide of Allan Donald Waugh, 69, who was found deceased in his house on May 30, 2014.
Yukon RCMP investigating unsolved Allan Waugh homicide

Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to an unsolved… Continue reading

A jogger runs along Millenium Trail as the sun rises over the trees around 11 a.m. in Whitehorse on Dec. 12, 2018. The City of Whitehorse could soon have a new trail plan in place to serve as a guide in managing the more than 233 kilometres of trails the city manages. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
2020 trail plan comes forward

Policies and bylaws would look at e-mobility devices

Snow-making machines are pushed and pulled uphill at Mount Sima in 2015. The ski hill will be converting snow-making to electric power with more than $5 million in funding from the territorial and federal governments. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Mount Sima funded to cut diesel reliance

Mount Sima ski hill is converting its snowmaking to electric power with… Continue reading

Colin McDowell, the director of land management for the Yukon government, pulls lottery tickets at random during a Whistle Bend property lottery in Whitehorse on Sept. 9, 2019. A large amount of lots are becoming available via lottery in Whistle Bend as the neighbourhood enters phase five of development. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Lottery for more than 250 new Whistle Bend lots planned for January 2021

Eight commercial lots are being tendered in additional to residential plots

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21. The Canada Border Services Agency announced Nov. 26 that they have laid charges against six people, including one Government of Yukon employee, connected to immigration fraud that involved forged Yukon government documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Charges laid in immigration fraud scheme, warrant out for former Yukon government employee

Permanent residency applications were submitted with fake Yukon government documents

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Most Read