Social Service Specialist 3 01481 (TR)
State of Washington - Kelso, WA

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Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS)

Our Vision is:
Safe, healthy individuals, families and communities

Our Mission is:
The Department of Social and Health Services will improve the safety and health of individuals, families and communities by providing leadership and establishing and participating in partnerships.

Our Values are:
Excellence in Service
Collaboration and Partnership
The Department of Social and Health Services, Aging and Disability Services Administration, Home and Community Services Division is recruiting for one (1) permanent position located in the APS Unit in Kelso. This position provides services to the over 18 vulnerable adult populations. This position offers, arranges for and provides services to vulnerable adults who meet ADSA target population and in-accordance with RCW, WAS, Chapter 6 of the Long Term Care manual, Management Bulletins and policies. This position functions independently and investigates reports of abandonment, abuse, financial exploitation, neglect and self-neglect of vulnerable adults. This position conducts objective, timely and thorough investigations; assists vulnerable adults to access appropriate services as provided by rules and regulations, policy guidelines and client consent; networking and coordinating with others to serve vulnerable adults and educating vulnerable adults and the community about abuse, neglect, self-neglect, abandonment, exploitation and protective services.

Duties included, but not limited to: Conducts face-to-face interviews with clients in their residence; Investigates allegations of abuse, neglect, self-neglect, abandonment and/or exploitation; Consult and staff cases with supervisor; Collect and evaluate relevant information to make decisions related to investigation, services and outcomes; Record and document case activity and complete forms; Authorize services and payments; Respond to client and constituent complaints/inquiries; Develop plan for the client’s adult protective service needs; to include coordinating and facilitating to completion of CARE assessment by Social Services; Interview collateral contacts to gather additional information; Make referrals to other community resources and internal and external stakeholders, Law Enforcement and Complaint Resolution Unit, etc.; Provide case management services to clients pending guardianship; Draft letter and respond to administrative requests for reports or constituent responses; Identify situations presenting risk to vulnerable children and/or adults and refer to CPS, APS, and/or CRU; Provide client advocacy, as well as consultation, networking, family support and crisis intervention; Coordinate with staff, judicial entities, families, facilities, local office staff, other regional offices and community agencies/partners regarding needs of clients served; Prepare and provide testimony at administrative hearings, court proceedings, criminal, civil, and administrative proceedings.

One year of paid experience assessing risk and safety to vulnerable adults or adult disabled population.

Plus one of the following (experience can overlap):
One year as a Social Service Specialist 2 (formerly Social Worker 2) since July 1, 1988.

A Master's degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field and two years of PAID social service experience equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 2.
***To have your experience count as “ paid ” status, please either:
1. put the salary in the requested section of the “Work Experience” section, OR
2. clearly state that the experience you are describing in the “Duties” section of the “Work Experience” is PAID .

A Bachelor's degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field, and three years of PAID social service experience performing functions equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 2.
***To have your experience count as “ paid ” status, please either:
1. put the salary in the requested section of the “Work Experience” section, OR
2. clearly state that the experience you are describing in the “Duties” section of the “Work Experience” is PAID .

For Promotion Only: A Bachelor's degree and three years of experience as a Caseworker 3, Social Worker 1A or B, Social Worker 2, Casework Supervisor Trainee, Casework Supervisor, Juvenile Rehabilitation Supervisor 1 or 2, or Juvenile Rehabilitation Counselor 2 in State service
NOTE : A two year Master's degree in one of the above fields that included a practicum will be substituted for one year of paid social service experience.

*** For Practicum consideration, your practicum must be identified in the “work experience” section of your application and labeled “Practicum”

NOTE : Employees must successfully complete the formal training course sponsored by their division within one year of their appointment.

NOTE : Equivalent social service experience would include the previous classes of Caseworker 3 or higher.

  • Able to perform the physical requirements of this position, such as moving/transferring equipment (such as a laptop, files, manuals, etc.);
  • Possess word processing and data input skills;
  • Ability to work independently to complete investigations/assessments in the homes and residences of individuals;
  • Ability to communicate and comprehend, through oral and written forms of communication, with management, peers, clients, and the public;
  • Ability to follow oral and written directives/instructions;
  • Ability and skill to interview utilizing an interpreter or those with a mental or physical impairment/disability;
  • Ability to compose professionally cogent and grammatically correct letters;
  • Ability to resolve conflicts or complaints between persons and groups with diverse personalities and differing goals;
  • Ability to de-escalate and diffuse potential crisis situations;
  • Ability to prioritize, multi-task and organize workload;
  • Ability to organize caseload priorities according to office policy, time-frames and workload expectations;
  • Prioritize caseload to meet timeframes and reprioritize assignments as necessary to meet emergencies and/or provide unit coverage;
  • Ability to independently assess situations and utilize good professional independent judgment;
  • Ability to understand and apply medical terminology specifically related to aging and long-term clients;
  • Ability to communicate with vulnerable adults;
  • Skill and ability to diffuse sometimes hostile situations and make decisions regarding personal safety;
  • Skill and ability to evaluate a crisis situation and/or complex case issue and staff with appropriate authority to avoid potential liability and/or negative outcomes;
  • Skill and ability to use a computer and software applications and learn new programs;
  • Maintain and update records and file case documents;
  • Ability to analyze a variety of programmatic issues/problems and develop workable solutions;
  • Ability to use and learn new software applications.
Supplemental Information:
NOTE: These positions are covered under the Collective Bargaining Agreement (WFSE). Therefore, as a condition of employment, candidates who are appointed are required to become members of the Washington Federation of State Employees, or pay other representational fees within the first 30 days of employment.

NOTE: Background checks are required for employees and applicants considered for selected positions within DSHS. Employees/applicants will be required to sign a release authorizing the background check. Failure to do so shall disqualify the applicant from employment in these positions. Information obtained from background checks will not necessarily preclude employment.

NOTE: This position has been designated as emergent under DSHS Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan. The incumbent in this position is directly responsible for delivery of DSHS Vital Services and for understanding the written local emergency management plan, which describes how vital services will be delivered during an emergency or disaster. During a recognized emergency, the duties may be different from normal duties, and will be temporary in nature, lasting only as long as necessary to resume normal operations. The incumbent may be required to perform the following during a recognized emergency/disaster:
  • Report for duty on a short notice for a specified timeframe;
  • Report for duty outside of normally scheduled work hours and workdays;
  • Report to a duty station that is different from the official duty station;
  • Perform work tasks outside the normal scope of duties reflected in this PDF.
NOTE: Must have ability to work with diverse populations and travel may be required throughout the region.
SPECIAL NOTE: Attention to detail is important to the successful completion of your application for this position.

  • Carefully review your application before submitting .*
You may NOT reapply to this posting for 30 days

Please note that initial screening will be solely based on the contents and completeness of the “work experience” section of your application in NeoGov. In order to be considered for this position you MUST apply online and complete the entire Application. A resume mailed, emailed attached to or embedded within the application will not substitute for the “work experience” section of the application.

The information provided in your Application must support your selected answers in the application questionnaire. All answers are verified and documentation may be required. Responses not supported in your application will disqualify you for consideration of employment from this requisition. A thorough reference check will be conducted for final applicants.

NOTE : If you do not have a qualifying degree than to have your education be considered for this position, you MUST attach a legible transcript to your application. Transcripts MUST be attached and labeled as a separate document. The transcripts MUST reflect the degree you wish to be considered.
**Applications that do not have a legible transcript identified and attached (in the “attachments” section) will be disqualified from further consideration for this posting.

Other Information
The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, national origin, honorably discharged veteran or military status, or the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Persons requiring accommodation in the application process or this job announcement in an alternative format may contact the recruiter at (360) 664-9092. Applicants who are deaf or hard of hearing may call through the Washington Relay Service by dialing 7-1-1 or 1-800-833-6388.

Should you have questions about completing the online application, BEFORE you submit your application , please contact the recruiter at 360-664-9092.
Or for a faster response, please email:

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