Dear Team,

As we begin a new fiscal year, I am proud of all we have accomplished together, despite the challenges.  I appreciate the flexibility and professionalism you have shown our residents during the pandemic.

With flu season on the horizon and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic still affecting us, health experts stress the importance of getting your flu shot. Getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever during a pandemic because it can help save healthcare resources for patients with COVID-19. While getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, flu vaccines have been shown to reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization and death.
 
Health Services will offer FREE drive-thru flu vaccinations at Barnett Park today, as well as Wednesday, October 13 through Friday, October­­ 16, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Appointments are highly encouraged, but walk-ups are also welcome. Visit ocfl.net/FluShots to make an appointment today.

In addition to the drive-thru flu shots, we are offering free onsite flu shots to County employees and their families. Check out the schedule and locations. Reservations are highly recommended and can be made online. Additionally, flu vaccines are available at Publix, Walgreens, CVS, and Centra Care or at your physician’s office.    
 
Open Enrollment
Don’t forget Open Enrollment ends tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct. 14. If you would like to make changes to your benefits, you will need to login to the enrollment portal by 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, October 14. Visit the Open Enrollment website for more information and resources. If you have any questions, email Benefits@ocfl.net. Don’t delay, enroll now to ensure that your family has the benefits coverage they need.

Census
A friendly reminder, the deadline for the 2020 Census was extended to October 31. It is not too late for you to make sure your household is counted. An accurate Census count ensures proper funding for roads, hospitals, public safety resources and more. Your information is safe and secure when you fill out the Census survey and it is not shared with any other agency. For more information and to complete the questionnaire, visit my2020census.gov.

Cybersecurity Awareness Month
October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and ISS has launched a four-week email series that will explore how Cybersecurity impacts our daily lives. Cybersecurity starts with YOU and is everyone’s responsibility. Every day, Orange County blocks a whopping 40,000 attacks from around the world trying to get into our systems. There are currently an estimated 4.8 billion internet users—over 62% of the world's population! This number will only grow, making the need to protect your devices and data more important than ever. To access interesting real-time internet statistics, visit internetlivestats.com. Be on the lookout for more tips and best practices. I urge you to stay vigilant, especially for those of you who telework.

Wellness, Mental Health, and Behavioral Resources
Many of us may be coping with stress and anxiety, feelings of isolation, or struggling to meet everyday obligations. Cigna offers a wide range of resources from practical home-schooling tips to coping with a family member’s job loss. These resources can help you navigate these difficult times. I encourage you to explore these resources and to focus on your own mental health needs. 
 
Voting
Voting is our civic responsibility – and every vote makes a difference. If you are unable or prefer not to vote early or at the polls on Election Day, you may request a vote-by-mail ballot. The deadline to request a vote-by-mail ballot for the November 3rd General Election is 5 p.m. Saturday, October 24. If you prefer to cast your ballot in person before Election Day, check Early Voting locations to find a convenient location. Unlike Election Day, when you must vote at your assigned polling place, you can vote at any early voting center. Early voting locations will take place from October 19 - November 1, 2020, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Thank you once again for all you do.
Jerry L. Demings, Orange County Mayor signature