Human Services - Caseworker

La Plata County   Durango, CO   Full-time     Social Service
Posted on May 23, 2024
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LA PLATA COUNTY

Human Services -

Caseworker: Provides case mgmt for children & families involved w/ the child welfare system. Assesses child maltreatment & takes action to build safety within families. Monitors treatment plans & reports to the Court. Supports young adults in independent living skills through Chafee Program. Provides paid emergency on-call services after hours. Must be accurate & efficient in computer data entry & have excellent time mgmt. Must be able to travel within CO for training & case mgmt tasks. BA Degree in a human behavioral sciences field is preferred. Full Time with medical, dental, vision, retirement, 38+ paid vacation/holiday days, 13+ paid sick days & paid parental leave benefits Wage $23.11-$27.73/hour depending on experience. Application deadline 4 pm 6/9/24. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.

CLASS TITLE: CASE WORKER I

GRADE: G08

DEPARTMENT: HUMAN SERVICES

FLSA STATUS: N

REPORTS TO:

VARIOUS DATE: 02/13

JOB SUMMARY: Works under direct supervision while learning job tasks and developing skills and knowledge. Meets with supervisor frequently for direction and makes significant decisions only with supervisor oversight. All documentation is reviewed by supervisor. Provides basic case work services for various programs offered through Department of Human Services; performs initial intake and Supervisor assisted ongoing case management; performs initial assessments and evaluations of individual or family needs and safety; assists in providing crisis intervention; provides basic direct and core services; recommends service referrals to community resources, core and direct services, and/or protective services; develops plans to assist clients and submits for Supervisory review; and maintains records, documentation and reports related to services provided. Position requires basic knowledge of established theories, principles and concepts of social casework practice related to assigned program area(s). Performs increasingly more responsible work as the employee gains experience and independently provides basic casework services.

GENERAL ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: Essential functions may include any of the following tasks, knowledge, skills and other characteristics. The list that follows is not intended as a comprehensive list; it is intended to provide a representative summary of the major duties and responsibilities. Incumbent(s) may not be required to perform all duties listed, and may be required to perform additional, position-specific tasks. Reasonable accommodations, as defined under the American with Disabilities Act, will be made when possible. Assists in providing crisis intervention at initial screening of applicants who are in need of services to prevent homelessness of themselves and/or out of home placement of their children; performs strengths-based assessment of their current situation; assists clients in identifying barriers, family strengths, support networks and in developing plans for self-sufficiency. Develops and submits for Supervisory review case plans and treatment plans as required for each assigned case; performs ongoing case management, including review and revision of treatment plans as needed; prepares required caseload documentation; compiles periodic status reports of work performed; maintains lists of current participants. Drafts financial and social needs assessments of clients’ situations for Supervisory review; receives consultation and coordinates with other Department staff and other agencies to provide needed services and benefits for which clients are eligible. Provides home or office based services to clients as needed, including but not limited to, short-term problem-solving, referral information, in-home services, and transportation to services. Makes appointments and provides transportation for clients as needed. Composes, keys, and distributes meeting minutes, letters, reports and other documents. Maintains and upgrades professional knowledge, skills, and development through required continued education and by attending seminars and training programs as well as reading trade and professional journals and publications. Provides emergency services on an on-call basis. Performs other related duties as assigned. Regular and predictable attendance is required.

CORE SERVICES ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Provides direct services to children and families in the home, office, and community. Services are directed to maintain children in their home. Services include teaching and role modeling parenting skills, safety, appropriate discipline, decision making skills, interpersonal relationships, nutrition, budgeting, and organization. Assists clients in developing a plan to practice skills between sessions. Drafts for Supervisor review in-depth assessments of clients; develops comprehensive strength-based treatment plans, which include goal statements, standards of performance, areas of service provision/responsibilities, and measures of success; participates in the review and revision of treatment plans as needed. Coordinates contact with and assists with collaborative efforts with community partners in accessing financial assistance, transportation, housing, and basic needs for families. Performs the initial assessment and evaluation of child or adult abuse or neglect issues; coordinates or contacts appropriate reporting channel if abuse or neglect is suspected.

CHILD PROTECTION INTAKE ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Performs the initial assessment and evaluation of child abuse or neglect issues; recommends need for medical exam and whether child must be temporarily removed from the immediate circumstances; coordinates necessary arrangements for foster care and other types of placement needed; coordinates or contacts appropriate reporting channel if abuse or neglect is suspected. Coordinates child abuse or neglect investigations with law enforcement personnel; determines proper jurisdiction; assists in conducting forensic interviews and shares relevant information with pertinent parties related to the reported incident; drafts for Supervisory review required documentation/reports regarding investigations; and attends/participates in court proceedings as required.

CHILD PROTECTION ONGOING ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Performs the initial assessment and evaluation of child abuse or neglect issues; recommends need for medical exam and whether child must be temporarily removed from the immediate circumstances; coordinates necessary arrangements for foster care and other types of placements needed; coordinates or contacts appropriate reporting channel if abuse or neglect is suspected. Drafts for Supervisor review in-depth assessments of clients; drafts comprehensive strength-based treatment plans, which include goal statements, standards of performance, areas of service provision/responsibilities, and measures of success; participates in the review and revision of treatment plans as needed. Provides case management services to clients with underage children who are participating in voluntary child welfare services and developing plans for ongoing safety and well-being of children. Provides casework services to clients with underage children who are placed through order of the Court and develops initial plans for Supervisor review of timely permanency for children. Provides ongoing case management and support services to children and youth in long term foster care or independent living situations; develops initial draft for Supervisory review and monitors plans for situations; makes arrangements for needed services; arranges for individual and/or family counseling services to preserve placements and prevent moves, if possible; and maintains appropriate documentation throughout process. Develops and submits for Supervisor review court reports regarding treatment plan compliance/case status; prepares case files for court hearings; participates in court hearings. Arranges and supervises visitations between at-risk clients and family members.

FOSTER CARE ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Provides home or office-based counseling to clients on topics such as safety, appropriate discipline, decision making, de-escalation of agitated persons, and improving communication among family members; assists clients in developing a plan to practice skills between sessions. Develops initial family assessments and evaluations for Supervisory review using state-mandated instruments to determine the character and suitability of the applicant(s), appropriateness of the home, and child care practices. Reviews all home assessments with the Home Study Review Team prior to certification of a family foster home. Completes within mandated timeframes all steps required by La Plata County and the Colorado Department of Human Services to certify a family foster home. Identifies, recruits, and recommends for approval family foster homes that demonstrate a genuine interest in and knowledge of children and a concern for their proper care and well-being. Assists with annual reviews of certified family foster homes, including review of the physician’s plan, annual visit and inspection of the family foster home, completes individual provider contract for purchase of foster care services, evaluates the foster care homes’ current and past compliance with the rules regulating foster homes, and ensures that all documentation is current and accurate. Assists with providing foster parents with a clear understanding of their role, the roles of the social worker, agency, legal parents, and courts. Shows respect and consideration for the foster parent as one who is making an important contribution to the agency’s goals. Supports the foster parents and helps them in their efforts to provide care to a variety of children and achieve the agency’s objectives. Assists with providing foster parents with guidance including on-going training and development opportunities to learn and grow, encourages and teaches foster parents to use appropriate resources to meet the needs of the foster child and build support networks with other foster parents. Monitors the completion of required training hours prior to certification or recertification of a family foster home. Assists with determination of the most appropriate placements for a foster home. Ensures that foster parents are given necessary information about a foster child’s background that will help in working with the child and provide a safe environment for the foster family. Assists with providing on-going supervision of all licensed family foster homes, receiving homes, specialized group facilities, and adoption resources to ensure compliance with licensing regulations and recertification of license. Maintains monthly face-to-face contact with the foster parent(s) when children are in placement in home, maintains documentation of contacts, answers questions that the foster parent(s) have about the program, discusses any county department concerns about the operation of the home, and observes child care. Completes annual supervisory visit to the family foster home; drafts for Supervisory review and provides copies of the written report to the foster family; drafts written notice of noncompliance to foster parent(s) requiring compliance within specified time frames; and ensures that all documentation is current and accurate.

ADOPTIONS ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Develops initial family assessments and evaluations for Supervisory review using state-mandated instruments to determine the character and suitability of the applicant(s), appropriateness of the home, and child care practices. Reviews all home assessments with the Home Study Review Team prior to certification of a home. Completes within the mandated timeframes all steps required by La Plata County and the Colorado Department of Human Services to certify a family foster/adoptive home. Identifies and recommends for approval family foster/adoptive homes that demonstrate a genuine interest in and knowledge of children and a concern for their proper care and well-being. Assists with providing adoptive parents with a clear understanding of their role, the roles of the social worker, agency, legal parents, and courts. Shows respect and consideration for the adoptive parent as one who is making an important contribution to the agency’s goals. Supports adoptive parents and helps them in their efforts to provide care to a variety of children and achieve the agency’s objectives. Assists with providing adoptive parents with guidance including on-going training and development opportunities to learn and grow, encourages and teaches adoptive parents to use appropriate resources to meet the needs of the child and build support networks with other adoptive parents. Assists with determination of the most appropriate placements for an adoptive home. Ensures that adoptive parents are given necessary information about a child’s background that will help in working with the child and provide a safe environment for the adoptive family. Assists with providing pre and post adoption services; assesses viability of and offers services/referrals to adoptive homes; facilitates preparation and filing of paperwork related to adoption process; makes recommendations about finalization of adoption; and provides necessary services or referrals after finalization to preserve the intact family.

ADULT PROTECTION ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Performs the initial assessment and evaluation of adult abuse or neglect issues; recommends need for medical exam and whether adult must be temporarily removed from the immediate circumstances; coordinates arrangements for alternative living situations if necessary; coordinates contact with the appropriate reporting channel if abuse or neglect is suspected. Coordinates adult abuse or neglect investigations with law enforcement personnel; determines proper jurisdiction; assists in conducting forensic interviews and shares relevant information with pertinent parties related to the reported incident; drafts for Supervisory review required documentation/reports regarding investigations; and attends/participates in court proceedings as required. Provides home or office-based counseling to clients and/or their family members and caregivers on topics such as safety, decision making, de-escalation of agitated persons, and improving communication among family members; assists clients in developing a plan to practice skills between sessions. Drafts for Supervisor review assessments of clients; drafts strength-based treatment plans, which include goal statements, standards of performance, areas of service provision/responsibilities, and measures of success; assists with the review and revision of treatment plans as needed. Coordinates and assists with delivery of intensive casework services for clients facing loss of benefits through program sanctions.

INDEPENDENT LIVING PROGRAM ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Assists with the delivery of services to prepare young adults in the foster care system to meet the challenges of adolescence and adulthood through a coordinated, progressive series of activities and experiences which help them to become socially, morally, emotionally, physically, and cognitively competent. Assists Supervisor with review of referrals made to the Chafee program to ensure that the referrals are complete and accurate; arranges and completes staffings on referred youth to determine eligibility for the Chafee program based on levels of care, age at time of the referral, and program area; advises referral source if a waiting list exists and the approximate time when services will be available to the youth referred. Participates in face-to-face visit with the referred youth and out-of-home care provider (if applicable) to discuss the program and determine youth’s decision regarding participation in the program. Participates in and coordinates ongoing case management and support services to youth in long term foster care or independent living situations; develops for Supervisory approval and monitors plans for situations; makes arrangements for needed services; and maintains appropriate documentation throughout the process.

ON-CALL ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: All responsibilities may not be performed by all incumbents. Assesses and evaluates with supervisory support child or adult abuse or neglect situations; recommends need for medical exam and whether child or adult must be temporarily removed from the immediate circumstances; coordinates necessary arrangements for foster care or other types of placements needed; coordinates contact with the appropriate reporting channel if abuse or neglect is suspected. Coordinates child or adult abuse or neglect investigations with law enforcement personnel; determines proper jurisdiction; assists in conducting forensic interviews and shares relevant information with pertinent parties related to the reported incident; drafts for Supervisory review required documentation/reports regarding investigations; and attends/participates in court proceedings as required.

MATERIAL AND EQUIPMENT USED: Computer(s) General Office Equipment Calculator Copy Machine Motor Vehicle(s) Camera Shredder Cell Phone Pagers Video Recorder Audio Recorder Printer

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:

Education and Experience: Bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year college or university in Social Work, Psychology or a related human behavioral science. No experience required. A newly hired Child Welfare Caseworker I is required to successfully complete the Colorado Department of Human Services training requirements for caseworkers within the mandated timeframes to be eligible for continued employment. In order to meet the minimum educational requirements of a human behavioral science degree, the applicant must have a degree with major course work (equivalent to 30 semester hours or 45 quarter hours) in either development of human behavior, child development, family intervention techniques, diagnostic measures or therapeutic techniques such as social work, psychology, sociology, guidance and counseling, and child development. Any combination of education, training and experience that provides the required knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform the essential functions of the job.

Licenses and Certifications: Valid State Driver’s License

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES: All knowledge, skills and abilities may not be required of all incumbents.

Knowledge of: Established theories, principles and concepts of social casework practice. Human physical, emotional, psychological and social stages of development. Addiction, domestic/family violence, developmental disabilities and mental health issues, signs/symptoms. Child and/or adult protection issues and investigative procedure, laws and time lines, including Native American Child Welfare laws. Multi-cultural issues and differences. Policies, procedures, philosophies, rules, ethics and regulations governing the services to clients. Applicable state, federal, Native American Tribal and local ordinances, laws, rules and regulations and how they apply to child/adult protection. Community resources available to assist clients. All computer applications and hardware related to performance of the essential functions of the job. Recordkeeping, report preparation, filing methods and records management techniques. Correct English usage, including spelling, grammar, punctuation, and vocabulary.

Skill in: Assessing risk in child and adult protection and assessing family functioning to insure safety of individuals. Assessing evidence, to include determining if a client’s injuries are consistent with reported abuse. Using forensic interviewing techniques. Using conflict resolution techniques. Using tact, discretion, and initiative within established guidelines. Educating families in appropriate parenting skills through teaching, role modeling, demonstrating and various coaching techniques. Providing accurate court testimony. Assessing environment in regard to personal safety. Preparing clear and concise reports, correspondence and other written materials. Researching, compiling, and summarizing a variety of informational and statistical data and materials. Organizing work, setting priorities, meeting critical deadlines, and following up on assignments with a minimum of direction. Applying logical thinking to solve problems or accomplish tasks, and to understand, interpret and communicate complicated policies, procedures and protocols. Using mathematics. Communicating clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing.

Ability to: Ability to respond to each client with empathy and respect. Ability to deescalate chaotic and/or potentially violent situations and set limits when appropriate. Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with a variety of individuals. Ability to collect, process and utilize incoming information, define problems, establish facts and draw valid conclusions. Ability to make critical decisions in high risk and high stress situations. Ability to speak effectively before groups and respond to questions. Ability to work/participate as part of a multi-disciplinary team.

Working Conditions and Physical Requirements: Work is typically performed in a variety of environments including the office, client homes, community agencies and schools, and may involve potential exposure to hazardous and/or violent environments and/or clients. The incumbent=s working conditions are typically moderately quiet, but may be loud at times. Primary functions require sufficient physical ability and mobility to work in an office and setting; to stand or sit for prolonged periods of time, to occasionally stoop, bend, kneel, crouch, reach, and twist; to lift, carry, push, and/or pull light to moderate amounts of weight; to operate office equipment requiring repetitive hand movement and fine coordination including use of a computer keyboard; to travel to other locations using various modes of private and commercial transportation; to verbally communicate to exchange information. While performing the essential functions of this job the employee is occasionally required to lift and/or move up to 50 pounds. Working time may require irregular hours and/or on-call status.