Shanghai Residents Are Running Out of Food

Lockdown has been extended indefinitely
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 7, 2022 8:58 AM CDT
Shanghai Residents Are Running Out of Food
Workers in PPE unload groceries from a truck before distributing them to local residents under the COVID-19 lockdown in Shanghai, China Tuesday, April 05, 2022.   (Chinatopix Via AP)

Shanghai's phased lockdown to stamp out a COVID outbreak was not a success—after locking down one half of the city, then the other, a lockdown of both halves of the city has been extended indefinitely and case numbers have hit new records six days in a row. Public frustration is growing and some residents say they are running out of food, the BBC reports. The 25 million residents of China's biggest city are confined to their homes, not allowed to leave even to buy food. Delivery services have been overwhelmed and residents say supplies of food from the government are unreliable.

Shanghai resident Zhang Yu tells the AP that she starts trying to order food online at 7am to feed her household of eight but it is always a struggle. "As soon as you go to the grocery shopping app, it says today’s orders are filled.” Residents have also been angered by policy that requires everybody who tests positive to be isolated in quarantine facilities, which has led to children and even babies being separated from their families, CNN reports. The government said Wednesday that the policy will be amended in the case of children with "special needs."

With mass testing underway, Shanghai identified a record 19,982 cases Thursday, higher than any day of the Wuhan outbreak in early 2020, the South China Morning Post reports. With public criticism of the government rising to unusually high levels, authorities have pledged to improve supplies. They are also watching closely for signs of unrest. The AP reports that when Shanghai residents starting singing from apartment balconies this week, a drone appeared and broadcast the message: "Control the soul’s desire for freedom and do not open the window to sing. This behavior has the risk of spreading the epidemic.” (More COVID-19 stories.)

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