Men and women still don’t seem to have figured out how to work or socialize together. For many, according to a new Morning Consult poll conducted for The New York Times, it is better simply to avoid each other. Many men and women are wary of a range of one-on-one situations, the poll found. Around a quarter think private work meetings with colleagues of the opposite sex are inappropriate. Nearly two-thirds say people should take extra caution around members of the opposite sex at work. A majority of women, and nearly half of men, say it’s unacceptable to have dinner or drinks alone with someone of the opposite sex other than their spouse. Sign Up For the Morning Briefing Newsletter The results show the extent to which sex is an implicit part of our interactions. They also explain in part why women still don’t have the same opportunities as men. They are treated differently not just on the golf course or in the boardroom, but in daily episodes large and small, at work and in their social lives. Further, the poll results provide societal context for Vice President Mike Pence’s comment — made in 2002 and resurfaced in a recent profile — that he doesn’t eat alone with any woman other than his wife. Attitudes reflect a work world shadowed by sexual harassment. In recent news about Uber and Fox News, women see cautionary tales about being alone with men. In interviews, people described a cultural divide. Some said their social lives and careers depended on such solo meetings. Others described caution around people of the opposite sex, and some depicted the workplace as a fraught atmosphere in which they feared harassment, or being accused of it.
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