If there’s been any kind of silver lining to the public health crisis facing our region, it’s this: By forcing us to remain physically apart from one another, the coronavirus has shown how fundamentally connected we really are. Day in and day out, we have depended on each other in ways we rarely gave a second thought to before the pandemic. But now we see that we are truly better together.

With that spirit of shared purpose in mind, we extend our sincere thanks to all members of the Pacific Northwest community for following Gov. Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order. If you’ve been worrying that you aren’t doing enough to help out during this time of crisis, rest assured that by staying home, you’ve been actively helping to save lives. Thank you for enduring the frustration and isolation of social distancing as we flatten the curve together.

Read the print replica of our Thank You to Local Workers special section.

And we thank every single essential worker in our region for keeping people as healthy, safe, informed and comfortable as possible during this extraordinary time. Health care workers and first responders are literally keeping our family, friends, coworkers and neighbors alive, reacting to a brand-new virus in real time. Local municipal, transport and utility employees are supporting us through difficult economic times and helping us stay connected. Teachers and schools have made the remarkable leap to online learning at a moment’s notice. Grocery, pharmacy, hardware, restaurant and essential retail workers are ensuring that people’s elemental needs are still met. And delivery personnel are making it possible for large numbers of us to stay home, slowing the virus’ spread throughout our region.

Each of us has a valuable role in seeing us safely through this crisis, with the hope that we emerge together as an even stronger community. In that spirit, many of our region’s businesses also want to highlight the remarkable work their employees and partners have been doing on behalf of all of us.