How to talk to others about wearing masks, COVID-19 safety during the holidays

How do I talk to others about wearing masks, COVID-19 safety during the holidays?

CHARLOTTE — During Thanksgiving, families sometimes talk about -- or rather debate -- subjects such as politics or religion.

This year, another hot topic may be brought up that could get heated quickly: COVID-19 safety and whether to wear or not to wear a mask.

“Very simply, you need to be wearing a mask when you are around anyone who is not from your household,” said Dr. Mandy Cohen, with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. “That’s the simple bottom line.”

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But how do you talk about it?

Guidance from experts at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health said having a conversation about masks and the dangers of COVID-19 is not simple.

The School of Public Health released a guide, which lays out scenarios about discussing masks and COVID-19 safety.

Discussions shouldn’t be mostly political

For example, you could say, “I’d love to share an article/podcast/post with you because I’m worried about your health now and in the future.”

Try to find information from a doctor or from someone who has been affected by the coronavirus.

When speaking with loved ones, try to speak with “I”

Correct: “I get really worried when I hear that you are eating indoors at restaurants.”

Incorrect: “You need to stop going to eat at restaurants indoors.”

For conversations with co-workers and supervisors

Know your goals if you are trying to get the company to change its policy or how it enforces its rules.

Write down your thoughts and concerns along with your goals. Think about alternatives to consider and why.

You can also roleplay a scenario with someone you trust.

Click here to read the entire guide from public health experts.

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