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by Abigail Van Buren

Talking Politics at Work Gets a No Vote From Co-Worker

DEAR ABBY: I work in close quarters with two women. They often talk politics, and I am very aware of their views. They asked me if I was voting in the midterms, and I answered in the affirmative, but offered no details as my vote is my personal business.

Since then, I have been told, "You are part of the problem." "People like you ..." and, "It must be nice to not care." I don't know how to respond to these hurtful comments, which make me feel terrible. It makes me extremely uncomfortable, and I don't think it's appropriate to discuss this at work in the first place.

I am not sure how to handle this if it continues. I don't want these women to hate me. I respect them, but this is a sensitive topic. -- NOT THE PLACE

DEAR NOT THE PLACE: I agree that, for the most part, discussing politics in the workplace is inappropriate because there are bound to be disagreements, which are not conducive to a pleasant environment. Hopefully, now that the midterms are behind us, the hostility will die down -- at least for a while.

If it persists, tell your co-workers that what they are doing is hurtful and you want them to stop. And if they don't, then discuss it with your supervisor or employer because what they are doing is creating a hostile working environment.

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