Child Protective Services Investigator In-Training (SSS3) – Parkland

US Government, Dept of Children, Youth, and Families

The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) was created to be a comprehensive agency exclusively dedicated to the social, emotional, and physical well-being of children, youth, and families regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or other socioeconomic factors. We believe our workforce should reflect the communities we serve and are actively searching for candidates that reflect that diversity.
 
Do you want to help families and communities safely care for their children? We’re looking for Child Protective Services (CPS) Investigators In-Training who can look out for the best interest of child safety, working toward the common goal of eliminating child and youth outcome disparities based on race and ethnicity. Our vision is that “All Washington’s children and youth grow up safe and healthy-thriving physically, emotionally, and educationally, nurtured by family and community.”
 
The Opportunity:
We are seeking dynamic and motivated professionals to join our hardworking Child Protective Services (CPS) team at our Parkland office (located at our Lakewood building).  As a CPS Investigator, you will perform advanced-level work in the investigation of child abuse and neglect allegations, and specialized case management in the CPS unit.  This position investigates allegations, assesses complex family situations, develops plans to protect children either in their own homes or in out-of-home care through the intervention of the court system, and makes findings of abuse or neglect based on the results of the investigation.  In performing all duties, the CPS Investigator adheres to the tenets of the Solutions-Based Casework (SBC) model with a focus on understanding and respecting the strengths of the clients including their heritage, cultural beliefs and values, communication, and learning styles.

Child Protective Services (CPS) – Persons who suspect that a child is being abused or neglected contact CPS with their concerns.  If the allegations meet the screening criteria, they will be assigned to an Investigation or Family Assessment Response:

  • Investigations – Allegations of sexual abuse and severe allegations of physical abuse and neglect are investigated to determine if abuse or neglect occurred and whether additional services are needed to keep children safe and help the family to be successful in the long term. CPS investigations are generally completed within 45 days and the case is either closed or moved to FVS or CFWS for continued case management.

If you are passionate about caring for children and providing them the support they desperately need, ensuring they are being provided the comfort that their best interests are at heart, our Social Service Specialist 3 may be your next career.  This position is responsible for assessing and intervening on assigned intakes to protect children from abuse and neglect.  As such, these types of positions can be highly stressful as you are responsible for protecting children from risk and harm whenever indicated with little supervision.
 
Some of what you will get to do:

  • Investigate/assess and evaluate reports of child abuse and/or neglect in compliance with RCW. WAC and DCYF policy. Provide ongoing safety and risk assessment of the family throughout the life of the case and take appropriate action to protect children, correct parental deficits through services, and provide support to the family.
  • Provide comprehensive and ongoing assessment of casework needs for child,
    parent(s)/guardian, and foster parent(s) with a focus and priority on child safety.
  • Assess the need for out-of-home placement, and work with the family to find the most
    appropriate placement to nurture the child’s cultural and family ties.
  • Provide psychosocial summaries, home assessments, and other appropriate
    correspondence with outside agencies.
  • Refer to clients for psychological, psychiatric, and/or medical evaluations and treatment with other community resources, and monitors progress and effectiveness of care.
  • Monitor the health and safety of the child by regular visitation in the placement facility and other settings re-assessing the needs and ensuring continued safety and well-being of the child.
  • Develop and implement individual safety, service, and voluntary service plans with families designed to appropriately address safety threats and/or ameliorate risk to children and support the integrity of the family unit.
  • Utilize FamLink to document case activities and maintain case records per program
    requirements.
  • Write letters, prepare court petitions and court reports, social summaries, case notes, safety assessments/plans, investigative assessments utilizing the structured decision-making tool, reunification assessments/transition plans, re-assessments, family action plans: manage and close cases in a professional manner within timeframes set by DCYF policy.
  • Provide case management services to facilitate out-of-home placements: reviews the need for continued out-of-home care.
  • Supervise and place as necessary, dependent children (abused neglected, and abandoned) in foster or other approved placements.
  • Monitor all out-of-home placements to ensure quality care. Meet monthly requirements for health and safety visits.
  • Provide permanency planning case management for children in an out-of-home placement which may include guardianship, adoption, long-term foster care, or other arrangements as indicated.
  • Develop a plan to meet the child’s needs including short and long-range goals.
  • Develop and implement appropriate service plans including service agreements with clients which are goal-directed, have specific behavioral objectives, and are measurable and time limited.
  • File petitions for dependency, terminations, and guardianships when necessary.
  • Complete all required legal documents for court, placement, and service delivery.
  • Actively maintain current knowledge of applicable laws, rules, and policies on the delivery of child protection and child welfare services within Washington State and deliver services accordingly.
  • Prepare and advise adults and children regarding the need for placement, separation of family members and loss trauma, and the steps for reunification.
  • Prepare the child for and support visitation with birth parents and siblings.
  • Participate in internal case staffings multidisciplinary and/or multi-agency case staffings. 
  • Utilize shared decision-making appropriately through consistent staffing with supervisory staff, prognostic/permanency staffing, CPT, LICWAC, and unit staffing as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with law enforcement, the CAC, and other community partners to provide the highest level of investigation/assessment, interviewing, and service provision to children and families.

Salary Ranges
Social Services Specialist 2 – $4,656 – $6,260
Social Services Specialist 3 – $4,892 – $6,575 

What we are looking for at the Social Service Specialist 2 level:
Professionals with one (1) year of experience as a Social Service Specialist 1.
OR 
*Bachelor’s degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field, and two (2) years of paid social service experience performing functions equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 1.
OR 
*Master’s degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field and one (1) year of paid social service experience equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 1.

NOTE: A two-year Master’s degree in one of the above fields that include a practicum will be substituted for the one year of paid social service experience.

What we are looking for at the Social Service Specialist 3 level:
Professionals with one (1) year of experience as a Social Service Specialist 2.
OR 
*Bachelor’s degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field, and three (3) years of paid social service experience performing functions equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 2.
OR 
*Master’s degree in social services, human services, behavioral sciences, or an allied field and two (2) years of paid social service experience equivalent to a Social Service Specialist 2.

NOTE: A two-year Master’s degree in one of the above fields that include a practicum will be substituted for the one year of paid social service experience. 

**Degree must be obtained from an accredited college or university whose accreditation is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), or foreign equivalent verified by a NACES-approved organization at naces.org

**Foreign Equivalency certification must be attached to the application for degrees obtained outside the U.S. Incomplete applications may be screened out of the recruitment process.

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

The above experience must Include one year (1) paid social service experience assessing risk and safety to children and providing family-centered practice services (strengthening and preserving family units).

In addition to those required qualifications, our ideal applicant will also have some or all of the following:

  • At least one-year assessing risk and safety with regards to child abuse and neglect concerns or developing safety or service plans with families.
  • Previous demonstrated familiarity with community resources and learn local community.
  • Previous demonstrated ability to work independently with little supervision as well as working as part of a team.
  • Previous demonstrated ability to speak and interact with clients, community partners, and the general public in a professional and courteous manner.
  • Previous demonstrated ability to multi-task and organize information to meet FamLink documentation requirements.
  • Previous demonstrated ability to utilize computer software programs such as Microsoft Word, Outlook, and Excel.

How do I apply? 
Complete your full applicant profile with your work history and highest education details, and include a copy of your college transcripts. Resume’s and cover letters are not required but recommended.

To take advantage of Veteran’s preference please attach your DD-214, member 4 long-form, or your NGB-22.  Please black out your social security number prior to attaching.
 
Supplemental Information:
Per Governor Inslee’s Directive 22-13.1 state employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Please note that any offer of employment is contingent upon you providing verification of your vaccine status, having an approved medical accommodation, or having an approved religious accommodation. No start date will be approved until you have either verified your vaccine status or have an approved accommodation.

This position is covered by a collective bargaining agreement. 

This announcement may be used to fill multiple vacancies.
 
The initial screening will be based on the content and completeness of your application and the materials submitted. All information may be verified and documentation may be required. Applications with comments such as “see attachments” or “N/A” in the supplemental question responses will be considered incomplete.
 
DCYF is an equal opportunity employer and supports equity, diversity, inclusion, and respect.
 
Need accommodation throughout the application/interview process? Unable to apply online? Contact the Recruitment team at dcyf.jobs@dcyf.wa.gov or (360) 280-3705 or the Telecommunications Device for the Deaf at 800-833-6388
 
Experiencing technical difficulties creating, accessing, or completing your application? Call NEOGOV toll-free at (855) 524-5627 or email support@neogov.com.
 
General suggestions for creating a good application packet:

  • Read the job posting very carefully. Find out as much as you can about the position. 
  • Make sure you are very diligent in following all the application instructions.  Include all requested documentation. 
  • Make sure your application and supplemental question responses address how you meet each of the required and desired qualifications. 
  • Carefully read each of the supplemental questions and respond completely to each one.  Pay careful attention to each component of the question, providing examples, thoroughly describing when and where you achieved the proficiency level, and detail the types of work you performed, the work products, etc., to demonstrate ‘how’. 
  • Specifically include all of your work experiences doing the same or similar work, especially if you reference work in these jobs describing when/where you gained proficiency level skills. 
  • Make sure your application reflects your best writing.

Prior to a new hire, a background check including criminal history will be conducted. Information from the background check will not necessarily preclude employment but will be considered in determining the applicant’s suitability and competence to perform in the position.
 

2023-03707

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