By Mary Kaczmarski
COVID-19, also commonly known as the coronavirus, has unleashed chaos across the globe over the last few months.
As it has spread throughout the United States, retail stores have quickly run low on basic household necessities, people clearing the shelves and stocking up on weeks or months worth of supplies.
Because of these shortages, many retail stores have been putting limits on how many items a person can buy at one time. For example, Target stores have limited it to 2 items per person on all high-demand items. These items include toilet paper, paper towels, cleaning supplies, and cases of bottled water.
“I think it’s important for stores to put limits on items because it creates more fairness. Some people have larger families who need more supplies, elders struggle to get to the store and some people with medical conditions may not have access to the supplies they may need because people bought them in mass amounts,” said sophomore Katie Oshana.
Target employees informed people that all locations get shipments in every morning, but the items in those shipments vary from day to day — meaning that they could receive paper towels in today’s shipment but not in tomorrow’s.
Other retailers, along with grocery stores, have also been putting limits on items, Walmart, Kroger, and Stop & Shop being among them. Trader Joe’s stores have also decided to limit every item to 2 per person.
Walmart released a statement on March 10 saying, “We have authorized our store managers to manage their inventory, including the discretion to limit sales quantities on items that are in unusually high demand.”
While some people have enough toilet paper and canned food to last them the next 2 years, some families are running low and are forced to travel to multiple stores to find just one pack of the item they need.
Many people have expressed that while they are trying not to worry too much, many others around them are making them nervous.
“I would not say I’m panicking about this current issue, however, I’d say what scares me more is the behavior of other people; such as emptying grocery stores and hoarding necessities for themselves,” said sophomore Anna Bernasconi.
This cycle happening in communities across the United States is causing physical fights to break out in stores. Anxiety and stress are running high.
“I’m more fearful of how people are reacting than I am of the disease itself,” said Bernasconi.