Millions across the country have already cast their votes in this 2020 presidential election. Some are even predicting that the number of votes cast this election may be the most ever. It’s always a good thing when more people take part in the election process.

Vote by mail has already begun, but come Monday, Marylanders will have their chance to go to the polls for eight days of early voting, leading up to Election Day, Nov. 3. We hope all will take advantage of the opportunity.

And for those who are still seeking out information about the candidates, you can visit fredericknewspost.com to check out our voters guide that was produced in conjunction with the Frederick County League of Women Voters, as well as our coverage of the local candidates and issues.

We know Frederick County Public Schools is doing everything possible to protect its employees who don’t have the ability to work remotely. That’s why we’re sad to hear that some food service and distribution employees recently tested positive for COVID-19.

It served as just one more reminder of the dangers of this virus.

These workers are essential and providing an important service to our community — making sure our children are fed.

We knew this was inevitable, but this news makes us that much more concerned for the safety of these vital workers. We know FCPS will find ways to improve safety protocols even more.

For now, we want to wish these employees a speedy recovery, and well-wishes to all of the FCPS food service and distribution employees.

We can never adequately thank our first responders enough, particularly during these pandemic times. So we were especially touched to see how the residents and staff at Spring Arbor Senior Living celebrated members of the county’s fire Station 31 and county sheriff’s deputies earlier this week.

On Tuesday, they gathered outside Spring Arbor where these first responders were offered a free bagged lunch as a way of saying thanks for what they’ve done for them and the rest of the community during the pandemic.

Spring Arbor’s Pamm Dalton organized the day not only as a thank-you to first responders but as a way to brighten the day of the facility’s residents, too. “I’m not going to lie, [the pandemic has] been very hard on the residents and their families,” she said.

And though social distancing kept them from directly interacting, some residents made white placards with stickers and handwritten notes for the deputies, paramedics and firefighters. It was great, they said, to have these first responders show up for something other than an emergency. The feeling was mutual.

“We always enjoy anytime we can get out and interact with the community,” Capt. Rick Stitely told our Graham Cullen. “It’s always what we enjoy doing. Especially, you know, we [usually] come here on different circumstances.”

Spring Arbor wasn’t the first assisted living center to say thanks during the pandemic and likely won’t be the last. But each time we see something like this, it makes us smile.

Finally this week, with the number of COVID-19 cases on the rise and with some health experts predicting it will get worse as the weather gets colder, it bears repeating that we need to stay vigilant in fighting the virus.

By now, we know what this means. We must continue to wear masks when out in public, practice social distancing and wash our hands frequently.

If we can be honest with ourselves, we’re probably not doing it as consistently as we did back in March and April. In the warmer months, with most of us focused on events outside, we were safer. But as we turn to doing more things inside, it’s important that we renew our commitment. We don’t need a repeat of the spring, when hospitals were busy with COVID-19 patients.

And while we wait for that virus vaccine, we’d like to remind everyone to get a flu shot. While it won’t help with the more powerful COVID-19, it will help you fight the flu. That’s important this time of year, too.

Yeas and nays is a weekly feature of quick-hit opinions from The Frederick News-Post’s editorial board. Send your suggestions to letters@newspost.com.

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