Fears over the spread of coronavirus have led to shortages of everything from hand sanitizer to toilet paper, and now tensions are rising around the world.
A fight broke out at a store in Sydney, Australia, over toilet paper, leading to the arrests of two women. Police in New South Whales issued a statement Saturday, telling residents that “there is no need for people to go out and panic buy at supermarkets.”
In California, cops were called to a Costco after a mass panic due to shortages of bottled water and toilet paper. Some stores have even begun limiting the number of items customers can purchase.
There have also been a growing number of xenophobic incidents across the U.S. related to the coronavirus outbreak. In NYC, a man was caught on video spraying Febreze at an Asian passenger on a Brooklyn train, leading authorities to investigate the incident as a possible hate crime. In Florida, a woman was harassed at a gym by a man who believed she might have COVID-19 simply because she’s of Asian descent.
Fears of the coronavirus are also turning neighbors against each other. A Utah woman who was quarantined after being on the Diamond Princess cruise ship received threats from neighbors telling her to stay away, despite multiple negative tests for the virus and a letter from the CDC stating she’s no longer a threat to the public.
For more on the coronavirus outbreak, including facts vs. myths, check out the World Health Organization’s myth busters explainer.