By ALEXANDRA OLSON and MAE ANDERSON
AP Business Writers
NEW YORK (AP) — The early months of the coronavirus pandemic shined a spotlight on essential workers. Strict shutdowns left the hardest-hit U.S. cities desolate, except for those fulfilling society’s basic needs. The virus has since spread, evolved and unleashed new challenges. The arrival of vaccines has brought new trials. Labor advocates fought for paid time off and other policies to help give workers access to the vaccines, while confronting reluctance among many to get the shots. At this new crossroads, The Associated Press caught up with four workers it profiled last year: a health-care worker, a cleaner, a subway driver and a warehouse worker. All four are vaccinated, easing their fears as they cope with the pandemic’s lingering toll.