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Yellowknifer editorial: Yellowknife’s Xmas wish list

Dear Santa,
Stanton Territorial Hospital is one Yellowknife workplace deserving of a Christmas miracle delivered by Santa Claus. If only we could be so lucky. NNSL file photo

Dear Santa,

Please forgive the self-indulgence of a rather lengthy wish list from us Yellowknifers.

We trust that your mask-wearing elves are toiling away after being double-vaxxed and perhaps even boosted. It sort of makes us feel guilty to pile on with so many requests under pandemic circumstances for another year, but here we are.

Let’s start with the Legislative Assembly. It’s been a bit of a mess over there, Santa. A good chunk of the year was spent dealing with dysfunction in the clerk’s office. Then we had an MLA who failed to abide by Covid-19 protocols and he followed that by attempting to intimidate his colleagues. Now he’s not an MLA anymore.

So we’re wishing for more time spent constructively. There are some genuinely good and well-meaning politicians in that lot, Mr. Claus. We would love for them to be able to concentrate on making the territory a better place while surrounded by less drama. We think they’d like that too.

In case you figured we’d be done with the dysfunction, well, not quite. There’s a predicament at the Yellowknife Fire Division. You see, the fire chief seemingly disappeared rather abruptly in October. Details are hard to come by, Santa. But a source told Yellowknifer that the lack of leadership is really taking a toll.

“It’s chaos right now… it’s the worst it’s ever been.”

That’s what we learned. As a jolly old soul, you probably don’t like hearing of such things. Neither do we. So we’re wishing for a special individual who can step in and rally those heroes in fire gear, and please expedite that one, Santa.

You’re not going to believe this, but we have another workplace that requires a Christmas miracle. It’s Stanton Territorial Hospital. The nurses and doctors there have been run ragged. The territorial government is trying to smooth things over with some extra cash for things like childcare but the staff want hazard pay for dealing with all of this Covid risk. The health minister is being a Grinch on that one. Once again, we just want peace and some reinforcements for our medical lifesavers, Santa. It’s particularly important for the obstetrics unit – those are the one who deliver babies. While some people who believe in you also profess that storks distribute babies, we’re assured that these trained health professionals bring little boys and girls into the world. There’s a desperate shortage of those critical workers in our city.

Since we’re on the health theme, a serious uptick in the Covid-19 vaccination rate and free rapid tests sent to every household in Yellowknife would be tremendous. Even better, if you could just wipe out this virus and all its variants altogether, that would be truly amazing. But that probably exceeds even your magic, Santa.

Not sure if you got word, but we’re going to get a new $68-million aquatic centre. That’s a huge gift in itself. Construction is supposed to start in 2022, so if you could keep an eye on things and ensure that there aren’t big cost overruns, that would be such a relief. What do you do with the rest of your year anyway?

To sum up, we’re looking for plenty of uptake on vaccine boosters and some urgent morale boosters.

We’ll be sure to leave some fresh ptarmigan, whitefish and a little Kicksled cream ale out for you, Santa. Safe travels!