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#IWillEatWithYou: People are Visiting Chinese Eateries to Counter Coronavirus Stigma

Photos tweeted by @sokhoartist / @AshUKTradeCQ.

Photos tweeted by @sokhoartist / @AshUKTradeCQ.

The panic and chaos that has resulted from multiple deaths being reported has brought forward prejudice, racism, and xenophobia against Asians or Chinese.

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The spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) has reached a boiling point with about 50 countries reporting at least 1 confirmed case.

In Australia, 22 cases have been confirmed as of February 23, according to the country’s Department of Health.

The panic and chaos that has resulted from multiple deaths being reported has brought forward prejudice, racism and xenophobia against Asians or Chinese.

Fear-mongering over the novel virus has affected various businesses run by Asians in European countries and Australia. Now, Australians have come up with an innovative way of ending the misinformation.

More and more people are coming out in support of Asian Australians and trending the hashtag #IWillEatWithYou. In a bid to revive the business of local Southeast Asian eateries, people are not only visiting the shops but posting it on social media and using the hashtag.

The motive is to spread the awareness that keeping one’s distance with the local Chinese or neighbouring country population would not help with keeping coronavirus at bay.

A progressive political activist group called GetUp! are behind the campaign and urge people to dine at Chinatown restaurants and shop at Asian grocers to keep them afloat.

Several people took up the challenge, including some local public figures.

Mayor of Burwood shared a picture of visiting a Japanese pancake shop.

Twitteratti have also come in support of ending the stigmatizing atmosphere.

Even people outside of Australia have taken the challenge.

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