As the Coronavirus outbreak continues in China, the authorities are stepping up their efforts to limit the opportunities for the virus to spread. However, despite claims by some on social media, the city is not in fact on lockdown, though the government has indeed taken steps to limit the unrestricted flow of traffic. Join me in the below video as I take you on a trip to a local market to stock up on supplies, and gain an on-the-ground view of the real situation in Shenzhen during the Coronavirus outbreak.
To rehash some of the points I discussed during the video, one of the biggest changes we’ve seen in Shenzhen since the beginning of the Coronavirus outbreak is the limiting of peoples’ movement. Now, it’s important to remember that this has been focused on specific communities and buildings, and not so much on individuals.
What I mean is that I, as well as other residents, can freely go outside and visit public spaces, but visiting certain spaces, such as malls, markets, and neighborhoods is tightly controlled. For example, when entering my overall neighborhood, I am required to have my temperature checked at one checkpoint, later repeating the process before entering my apartment building. Temperature checks are also required for many malls and areas where people would be in close proximity.
Another big point I discussed in the video was how the harsh realities of a virus outbreak can be, specifically in terms of requiring a very strong and restrictive government response, putting the good of everyone over that of specific individuals. People located in hot zones (for lack of a better term) like the city of Wuhan, have additional restrictions imposed, just as being unable to leave the city. Local officials in other cities have also been very strict in implementing forced quarantines on individuals who may not be sick, but are merely from affected areas, or recently traveled there.
We also have seen stories in the media about other harsh actions taken by the local authorities, such as installing additional CCTV cameras to monitor individuals’ movement, using drones to monitor people and remind them to take safety precautions, and destroying Mahjong (Majiang) tables to prevent people in villages from ignoring authorities’ directives to avoid congregating in groups.
See what it was like to visit a market in Shenzhen during the initial COVID-19 outbreak.Tweet
And while these measures certainly seem harsh from outside China, even anathema to those hailing from democratic countries, as someone on the ground who is still healthy, they make a lot of sense. I certainly agree there is still room for improvement in the handling of this virus outbreak, but what of what has already been done seems to have helped limit the spread of the virus, in China and overseas.
For the full story, make sure to check out the video. I’ll be aiming to provide future updates as the Coronavirus outbreak continues in Mainland China, so please feel free to let me know if there is a specific aspect of the situation in Shenzhen that you’d like to hear about. Please also consider subscribing to my YouTube channel if you’re interested in seeing more videos on China and the Coronavirus.
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