Infographic: The French Presence in Yukon

The French presence in Yukon. Details in text following the infographic.

Text version: The French Presence in Yukon

  • 14% of the population (4,900 people) can speak both English and French.
  • French is the mother tongue of 5% of the population (1,693 people)
  • French is the first official language of 4.4% of the population (1,575 people)
  • In terms of population percentage, Yukon is third in Canada for being the most bilingual, after Quebec and New Brunswick.


  • 765 students are enrolled in French immersion (2017-2018) (15% of eligible enrolment)
  • French immersion enrolment has increased by 89% since 2004.
  • 1689 students are enrolled in core French (2017-2018) (32% of eligible enrolment)
  • 3 French-language schools with 297 students (Kindergarten to Grade 12) (2017-2018)

Where do Francophones live?

Most Franco-Yukonnais live in and around the capital, Whitehorse.

Economic Regions

  • Whitehorse (Census Agglomeration): 83%

Where were Francophones born?

  • In Yukon 15%
  • Elsewhere in Canada 74%
  • Abroad 12%


  • Newspaper: L’Aurore boréale
  • Radio: CBC North and Radio-Canada ICI Première and ICI Musique 
  • Television: ICI Radio-Canada Télé and Unis TV


May 15:

  • Yukon Francophonie Day offers Yukoners an opportunity to learn more about the vibrant French language and culture in the territory and to appreciate and celebrate them.


  • In 1840, Robert Campbell explored inland Yukon for the Hudson's Bay Company with the help of French-Canadian guides.
  • In 1874, Francophone fur trader François-Xavier Mercier built the Fort Reliance trading post near the mouth of the Klondike River.
  • During the Klondike Gold Rush in the late 1800s, Francophones were already well established in the area.
  • In the 1980s, the Franco-Yukonnais flag was adopted, and a French school and daycare centre opened.
  • In 1982, the Association franco-yukonnaise was established.
  • École Émilie-Tremblay, the first French-language school in the territory, opened in 1984. It is named in honour of one of the first Francophone women from Quebec to have made the long journey to Dawson, Yukon.
  • The Commission scolaire francophone du Yukon no 23 is the only school board in Yukon. It officially opened on July 1, 1996, and is responsible for French-language education throughout the territory.
  • In 1988, Yukon’s Languages Act was passed, and the French Language Services Office was created.
  • In 2007, the Yukon government proclaimed May 15 as Yukon Francophonie Day.


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