For many, the city they live in holds a special place in their heart. Whether they were born there or recently moved there, a city can grow on people in a variety of ways.
But what if your hometown is breaking your heart? What if you’ve grown to dislike or even hate the city where you work, live, eat and play?
It’s what some residents realize after living in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for some time. While it’s the largest city in this prairie province, it’s definitely not the largest in Canada. While this, in itself, could prompt a few of the resource-worker transplants to flee this city, it’s not the only reason to flee.
Here are four good reasons to break up with Saskatoon.
1. It’s colder than cold
While summers in Saskatoon are often sunny and hot, the remaining eight months of the year are a different story. Winters on the prairies are freezing—and we mean freezing. Yes, there are other cities with horrendously cold winters, such as Calgary, but unlike its Albertan neighbour, Saskatoon doesn’t get the blissful Chinook winds. Instead, residents must battle some of the country’s toughest winds. Gusts have gale-force strength, leaving Saskatoon commuters bone-chilled and cold to their core for about six months out of every year.
2. Jobs are hard to come by
Prior to the resource boom, the only plentiful jobs you could find in Saskatchewan were in the agricultural sector or in the government. Then potash and crude got big and the resource sector boom spilled into Saskatchewan and bolstered Saskatoon’s real estate market and the overall economy. While the peak of that boom is gone, there are still jobs in this town but only if you’re knee-deep in employable skills related to resource extraction. Worse, this sector is hit fast and hard as soon as prices drop, which is why the province’s unemployment rate jumped more than 2% in the last calendar year, forcing more than 5,000 more people to seek out new jobs, compared to 2016.
3. Wage inequality is a serious problem
If you are a woman living in Saskatoon, there is a good chance you are not being treated as fairly as you deserve. Yes, it’s a problem everywhere, but a late 2016 report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives showed it’s particularly bad in Saskatoon. According to this report, for every $1.00 a man makes in Saskatoon, a woman will only make $0.63 cents.
4. There’s no place like home – unless you feel unsafe
Let’s face it, no one wants to live in a city with a crime problem. While, there are definitely areas in Saskatoon that are community-oriented and have very little criminal activity, the city, as a whole, struggles with a crime problem and has for some time now.
According to a Stats Canada report released in late July 2017, Saskatoon was at the top of the list when it comes to crime. Currently, the crime rate sits at 8,942 incidents per 100,000 people—a 6% increase from the year before. What makes it particularly problematic is that the types of crimes are considered “severe” and considered some of the worst in Canada.
While there are many good things about the city of Saskatoon, those looking to leave have more than a couple of reasons for making a break and starting afresh.