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  • Writer's pictureBehind the Mask

Controlled Sanctuary — China

Updated: Aug 5, 2020

In China, the coronavirus situation has been getting a lot better... malls, restaurants and bars have all opened, so I can freely go out with my friends now. What a relief. I thought it would’ve been over a year before I could taste the sweet nourishment of freedom. Masks are now out of the norm and only around 10% of everyday people even wear them now, from what I’ve seen recently at least. The only places that require masks to enter now are clubs in the city. But that makes sense, as clubs base themselves off an abundance of customers and crowding in a cozy environment with strangers.

There has also been a recent emergence of a phenomenon known as “mobile health codes” here in China, where establishments may ask to see your personal health code upon entering. The health code program essentially works off your phone location and as it is a program used in China, one can imagine the holy privacy that is your location is of no concern to the government. Your phone will check to see if you have been in China for over 14 days or not and if you have, congratulations, your health code will appear green and healthy. If you have not however, the code will shine yellow and you will likely be swiftly deterred from any establishment you attempt to enter via capture from an inconspicuous white van. I kid, they’ll just send you back home. Although it may be annoying at times to always have the need to pull up a health code, personally I think it is a system that works, and the statistics do indeed show. There have been little to no cases of COVID-19 in the populated province of Jiangsu where I've lived for months now and it just goes to show how much of an impact government regulations can have on the suppression of a pandemic.

Life goes on in China and I have to be somewhat thankful to the community around me for working together in a contingency such as this. In the end, the safety of ourselves and those around us are what’s important and nowadays I can go out without fear of death, drink in hand and live life the way it’s meant to be lived.

— Edwin Zha, 16

Nanjing, China


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