The Inuit Circumpolar Council says if the novel coronavirus spreads to the North, communities in Canada, Alaska and Greenland are at a much higher risk of exposure because of a chronic lack of basic infrastructure and resources.
The ICC says many communities lack sewers and running water, putting people at greater risk of contracting the virus and its accompanying respiratory disease, COVID-19.
They have also called on governments to close those infrastructure gaps to protect against future health threats.
NDP leader Jagmeet Singh wrote a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Friday, urging him to make sure Indigenous and Inuit communities are not disproportionately affected if a widespread outbreak of the virus hits Canada.
The NDP says Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller should be on the new COVID-19 cabinet committee struck earlier this week to provide an all-government approach to combating the virus.