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Bayer fires Australian woman who went for a jog in Beijing

47-year-old had arrived in China just the day before and breached local quarantine rules


March 20, 2020
By Talent Canada Staff

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A 47-year-old Australian woman living and working in China was fired from her job at Bayer after she breached local quarantine laws to go for a jog.

The woman, who lives in Beijing, was filmed quarreling with a community work as she left her apartment.

“I need to go running. I need to work out. If I fall sick, who will take care of me? Will you come?” said the woman, according to published translations, as she tries to open the keypad lock on her apartment door. She is not wearing a face mask and it appears she has just come back from her jog. She had arrived in China from Australia just the day before.

A second video shows two police officers arriving at her door. The officers tell her she is supposed to be under quarantine after arriving from overseas. She tells them she is Australian, and the officers remind her she has to comply with the law — whether she is Chinese or a foreigner.

“This is to protect yourself and to protect others,” one of the cop says.

Angry locals determined she worked at Bayer — something the company later confirmed. It also said she had been terminated — posting on its official account on Weibo, a popular social media platform in China.

According to relevant rules, the company has decided to dismiss the employee, effective immediately,” it said, according to a CNN translation. “All employees of Bayer China should strictly obey the various measures imposed by local governments to fight the COVID-19 epidemic, as well as local law and regulations.”

The statement was “widely applauded” on Weibo — attracting nearly two million likes.