LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Sound the alarm! Yellowknife is dying!


From: Joey Sutton, owner of Polar Tech Recreation in Yellowknife

Dear editor,

OK, now that I’ve gotten your attention with the typical media alarmist headline, I’d like to draw your attention to the fact that Yellowknife is not dying at all.

Joey Sutton, right, who recently purchased Polar Tech Recreation from Gord Olson, left, writes that media focus on Yellowknife's future doesn't point out enough positives. NNSL file photo
Joey Sutton, right, who recently purchased Polar Tech Recreation from Gord Olson, left, writes that media focus on Yellowknife’s future doesn’t point out enough positives.
NNSL file photo

A Yellowknifer for 18 years now, I’ve been extremely fortunate to be able to recently invest millions of dollars toward buying a local recreational vehicle business, with absolute determination of 10 percent per year growth for the next 25 years. This is my life’s passion but also my life savings.

It’s as though my days start under a rain cloud as all I see are attention grabbing headlines of the slow, agonizing death of the lifeblood of Yellowknife — the mining industry; the never ending Giant Mine remediation; and closure of the only boat launch in Yellowknife that makes any sense at all. Here’s a news flash — none of this should be surprising to anyone. Enough with the click bait!

Negativity is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Sell all the headlines you want but you are also making Yellowknife a scary place to live — and make a living. In these days of “Buy now, pay later,” where is your sense of self-preservation? You’ll soon be reporting the mass exodus of northern residents, and along with it, your reader/listener base.

We talk of mine closure as if its going to be as sudden as someone turning off a light switch. Gahcho Kue opened only two years ago, and a local news outlet has already reported that it’s nearing the end of its mining life.

We have time. But there has to be nothing less than blanket support of this industry and forward thinking. The alternative is the ghost town that will be Yellowknife.

We’ve just built a $300 million hospital, we’re keeping the old one too. TerraX Minerals is spending millions on exploration. Kennady Lake will soon have a second diamond mine. Diavik just broke it’s own record with the recovery of an egg size diamond.

There’s no shortage of positive things to focus on. We need that right now. The economy has been in decline for years but my business has doubled in size in the last five years. Leadership makes all the difference. Adaptation and innovation are key

It all starts with an idea.


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