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How to politely talk about the COVID-19 vaccine at dinner this Thanksgiving

As people gather around the Thanksgiving table this holiday the topic of the vaccine may come up but how do you navigate that conversation politely?

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — At family dinner, the time-tested advice is to not talk about politics or religion, but now the COVID-19 vaccine may be a new hot topic at the table.

Master Etiquette Expert Angie Allison said you have every right to know if someone is vaccinated or not at Thanksgiving, but don’t be confrontational when asking someone their status.

“Maybe you ease into it with a “hope you don’t mind me asking “ or “may I ask you something in private” or do you mind if we go outside and talk and again don’t be confrontational about it,” Allison said.

She said it is good manners for the host to find out so they can let guests know if someone is vaccinated or not, that allows the guest the opportunity to decide whether to attend.

Allison said all guests vaccinated or not should wear their masks when arriving.

“Whoever opens the door if it’s the host they establish right then and there “oh we are keeping our mask on while we are indoors and it’s a beautiful Northern California day in November so we are going to have dinner outside but while we are inside let’s be mindful and keep our mask on” or if everyone is vaccinated they come in and keep their mask handy,” Allison said.

If the table conversation is going towards the topic of the shot and someone doesn’t want to take part, she has a tip for that too.

"What you never want to do is rudely leave the conversation so if you’ve been talking about something else you want to maintain that sense of calmness and confidence and say 'I respect your decisions I support your decisions I’m going to go back to the buffet bar because I want to put some more gravy on my mash potatoes” and ease out of the conversation,'” Allison said.

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