'Elderly people pushed aside': Pensioner reveals the horror of going to the supermarket

·News Reporter
·3-min read

A Perth pensioner has spoken of her disgust amidst stampedes of shoppers and people fighting over toilet paper in supermarkets.

Irene Keevers, 66, from Yokine in Perth, told Yahoo News Australia she hasn’t been able to get toilet paper for a month.

“I’ve tried different supermarkets, different suburbs and nothing works,” she said.

“I often show up early but every time it’s like a stampede of people rushing into the store and I don’t run as fast as I used to.

“By the time I get to the shelves they’re empty - it’s like, ‘bad luck - there’s nothing here’.”

Irene Keevers, 66, is pictured.
Irene Keevers, 66, says she hasn't been able to buy toilet paper for a month. Source: Supplied

She said on three separate occasions she’s nearly been knocked over by shoppers rushing into the supermarket.

“I’ve also seen people in their 80s pushed aside,” she said.

“I can’t fathom why anyone would be so disrespectful.”

An elderly woman was filmed having toilet paper ripped from her hands by another woman in Coles earlier this month.

CCTV also captured panic buyers blitzing an Aldi for toilet paper just after it opened last week.

Ms Keevers added she knows seniors who are disheartened by not only being unable to buy toilet paper now but also sugar and flour.

“This is crazy,” she said.

“I’m struggling and I’m more than capable of buying my own groceries. I have a car and still drive.”

Two women fight over toilet paper in Coles.
Two women were caught arguing over toilet paper in a Coles supermarket. Source: Instagram/jamiezhu

The 66-year-old said “it’s only getting” worse too.

Coles announced a “community hour” on Monday with 7am to 8am only for people with a government-issued Pensioner Concession Card, Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, Companion Card and Health Care Card.

Shoppers rush into a Melbourne Aldi to buy toilet paper.
Aldi opens and shoppers rush in to buy toilet paper. Source: Facebook

Images from the early hours of Tuesday morning showed elderly shoppers lining up in droves to try and get desperately needed supplies.

But according to a number of elderly shoppers, the plan hasn’t worked.

Speaking to Yahoo News Australia, Judy Lewis, 80, from Melbourne said she and her 86-year-old husband, David, arrived at the Glen Huntly Woolworths store in Melbourne at 6am this morning, just to be safe.

A man in a face mask leaves Woolworths at Marrickville.
Shoppers leave Marrickville's Woolies in Sydney on Tuesday morning. Source: AAP

Ms Lewis said despite being right at the doors before the store opened, she had no luck getting the essentials she and her husband needed.

She said maybe the first 20 people in line were able to get their hands on toilet paper, the toothpaste and toothbrushes were almost gone, there was barely any fresh produce or meat.

“It was almost like a sick joke,” she said.

Empty toilet paper shelves at Coles supermarket in Adelaide.
A shopper walks past empty toilet paper shelves in an Adelaide Coles. Source: AAP

Another shopper, 71, said he went to a supermarket in Sydney’s southwest and “left with nothing”.

Ms Keevers said if she gets any toilet paper she’ll be sharing it with her friends who need it.

“It would be like winning the Lotto,” she said.

Do you have a story tip? Email: newsroomau@yahoonews.com.

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting