Tips to Decline an Invitation to Thanksgiving Gatherings

 In light of the rising cases of COVID-19, the Está En Tus Manos initiative is offering tips to help people decline Thanksgiving invitations to keep your loved ones safe from spreading or contracting COVID-19. 

Before accepting or declining a Thanksgiving invite, ask your host what steps they are taking to help their guests stay safe. If traveling, check the status of COVID-19 cases at your destination. Get more information and tips about holiday celebrations and small gatherings from the  Centers for Disease Control & Prevention by CLICKING HERE. These considerations are meant to enhance—not INSERT —any state, local health and safety laws, rules and regulations.

For those who wish to decline invitations, keep these tips in mind: 

  • Be honest. Let your friends and family know you care for them or love them and want to do what you can to reduce the likelihood of getting them sick or getting yourself sick. Don’t tell them you’re sick unless you are indeed sick. Say, “I wish I could be there, but I’m avoiding indoor gatherings because of COVID-19.”
  • Use “I” statements. Say, “I am focusing on safety and would rather stay home.” or “It’s in my hands. … I don’t want to be a virus spreader and put others at risk.”
  • Acknowledge disappointment. Address the pain of your decision and how disappointing it is. 
  • Stick to your decision. Loved ones may try and persuade you into reconsidering. They may even give you a guilt trip. Even though staying strong is tough, remind loved ones you are doing this to keep your loved ones safe.

The Está En Tus Manos campaign has also released a series of visuals in Spanish and encourages community organizations and individuals to share with their networks to keep COVID-19 prevention top of mind. A graphic can be found by CLICKING HERE.

Information about COVID-19 and testing locations is available on the Southern Nevada Health District’s website at, as well as