Filipinos have been immigrating to Canada for decades, and there are now so many Filipino communities in various Canadian provinces.
Despite this activity, there are areas in Canada that have remained foreign and unheard of for many immigrants from the Philippines for a long time.
One of these is Yukon, one of the territories in Canada’s northernmost part (it borders Alaska), known for its extreme weather, which is very different from the tropical weather of the Philippines. It is this reason which made the said territory outside of the options of many interested immigrants for a long time.
Recent years, however, have seen a growing number of Filipinos flocking to the Yukon territory, settling in Whitehorse and starting a new life here.
Some Facts About the Yukon Territory
Despite the wide difference not only in weather but also in culture, Yukon has started to attract a great number of immigrants because of the good quality of life that if offers.
For one, Yukon is the third territory in Canada with the lowest unemployment rate (the first two are the provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta).
Employment demands have been rising during the past years, and Yukon had a hard time filling slots from inside Canada – thus the opportunity for foreign workers.
Aside from many available jobs, Yukon also attracts Filipinos because of the high wages that it offers in various industries. In fact, with its $10.54 minimum wage, it is second in Canada in offering high pay to workers.
There is no current record of the number of Filipinos in the North, but what’s true is that Filipinos make up the largest foreign group in the area.
Yukon introduced its nominee program in 2007, and this brought in more immigrants. Aside from a very promising life upon arrival, one thing that makes Yukon and its nominee program very appealing is the process being so streamlined that everything is fast and easy – from entry to permanent residency.
A Look at the Filipino Community in Yukon
At present, there are so many Filipinos who have already made Yukon their home. In fact, there is already a Filipino newspaper in the area.
Some Filipinos have even started businesses here. For instance, the local KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken) is co-owned by a Filipino – and it hires many Filipino workers.
The city council in Whitehorse, Yukon is also composed of one Filipino-born resident who is serving in and leading the city.
The number of Filipinos in Yukon is expected to increase as more workers are self-recruiting and inviting Filipinos at home to work for the Yukon company that they themselves are working for.
Immigrants to Yukon attest to having encountered some challenges while adjusting to the weather, the culture, and way of life, but all of them agree to loving the life they have created here. And with the Yukon Territory nominee program, more foreign groups are expected to surface in Yukon, creating an even more diverse culture and environment.