Shanghai authorities battling a Covid-19 outbreak have erected fences in front of apartment blocks, sparking a fresh public outcry over a lockdown that has forced much of the city’s 25 million residents indoors.
Images of workers in white hazmat suits blocking off apartment block entrances and entire streets with six-foot-tall green fences went viral on social media, prompting questions and complaints from residents.
“This is so disrespectful to the rights of people inside to use metal barriers to enclose them like pets,” said a user on social media platform Weibo.
One video showed residents shouting from balconies at workers trying to put up fences before giving in and taking them away. Other videos showed people trying to knock down fences.
Many of the fences were erected around what have been dubbed “sealed areas” – buildings where at least one person has tested positive for Covid-19, meaning residents are forbidden from leaving their front doors.
It was not clear what prompted authorities to resort to fencing. A local authority statement shared online Saturday said some areas were in “hard quarantine.”
The Shanghai government did not respond to a request for comment.
China’s most populous city and main economic hub is battling the country’s biggest Covid-19 outbreak with policies that force all positive cases into quarantine centers.
The lockdown, which has lasted more than three weeks for many residents, has fueled frustration over access to food and medical care, lost wages, family separation and quarantine conditions.
It has also hit the world’s second largest economy as factory production has been disrupted by tangled supply chains and difficulties for locked-in residents to return to work.
Shanghai is conducting city-wide Covid-19 testing daily and accelerating transmission of positive cases to central facilities to eliminate virus transmission outside quarantine areas.
Authorities have also relocated entire communities, including uninfected people, according to local residents and social media posts, saying they must disinfect their homes.
https://www.independent.ie/business/world/shanghai-fences-in-housing-blocks-in-bid-to-contain-covid-19-outbreak-41583468.html Shanghai fences in apartment blocks to contain Covid-19 outbreak