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This position is within the Public Services unit of the District of Columbia Public Library system, in the Service Design and Engagement department and serves as a Program Support Assistant. This position is responsible for supporting the Peer Outreach Program which serves individuals experiencing homelessness, mental illness, substance use disorders, and returning citizens. The Program Support Assistants will refer eligible customers to services in the community.
Under the general direction of the Health and Human Services Assistant Manager, the incumbent will work to connect customers with services in the community. Program Support Assistants will work to build trust with those experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness to help meet basic needs, including access to food, clothing, showers, laundry, transportation, identification, public benefits, and recovery support services.
The Program Support Assistants will provide housing assessments and work with other providers to connect customers to housing resources. The Program Support Assistants will work at various libraries throughout the DCPL system. The incumbent will need to be self-directed, willing to work without an on-site supervisor, and be willing to take direction from branch managers, who are ultimately responsible for the smooth running of branch libraries.
A person applying for a position in the Career Service, Educational Service, Management Supervisory Service, an attorney position in the Legal Service (series 905) other than the Senior Executive Attorney Service (SEAS), or an attorney position in the Excepted Service (series 950) who is a bona fide District resident AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION for the position, may be awarded a 10-point residency preference over non-District applicants, unless the person declines the preference points. If selected the person shall be required to present no less than 8 proofs of bona fide District residency and maintain such residency for 7 consecutive years from the effective date of the appointment. Failure to maintain bona fide District residency for the 7-year period will result in forfeiture of employment.
General Suitability Screening
This position is subject to general suitability screening; verification of employment history, reference checks and degree/license, as applicable. The appointee to the position may be offered employment contingent upon receipt of a satisfactory general suitability screening.
Enhanced Suitability Screening
The position for which the individual is applying has been identified and designated as requiring enhanced suitability screening; If tentatively selected for the position, a criminal background check, traffic record check, consumer credit check, and mandatory drug and alcohol test will be conducted (as appropriate); and the appointee to the position may be offered employment contingent upon receipt of a satisfactory enhanced suitability screening.
Selectee will be eligible for health and life insurance, annual (vacation) and sick leave and will be covered under the District of Columbia government's retirement plan. However, if selectee was previously employed in the District of Columbia government under an appointment for which he/she was eligible for Civil Service Retirement (CSR), contributions to CSR will resume upon re-employment.
Licenses and Certifications
Certified Peer Specialist
Work takes place at various library locations throughout the DCPL.
Other Significant Factors
Duration of Appointment: Career Service Regular Appointment
Collective Bargaining Unit: This positing is not in the collective bargaining unit
Promotion Potential: No known promotion potential
Equal Employment Opportunity
The District of Columbia Government is an Equal Opportunity Employer: all qualified candidates will receive consideration without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibilities, matriculation, political affiliation, genetic information, disability. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination, which is also prohibited. In addition, harassment based on any of the above-protected categories is prohibited.
Click here to review additional Employment Disclosure & Information for Applicants.
Duties and Responsibilities
Conducts community-based outreach for consumers to assess needs and promote treatment engagement
Participates in case reviews regarding client needs and strengths; responsible for reporting services and referrals.
Engage individuals who need/want to be connected to services including mental health services, substance use recovery services, housing, etc.
Identify and engage individuals who may be experiencing homelessness in and around library branches
Work with homeless customers to help identify needs, such as housing, mental health, substance abuse, food, etc. and work with customers on goal setting
Assist individual customers with applying for public benefits including Medicaid, SSI/SSDI, and TANF, including accompanying customers to apply for public benefits and other services.
Participate in supervision with DCPL Health and Human Services Assistant Manager
Receive referrals from library staff, mental health providers, and other social service agencies and perform assessments to determine the patron’s individual needs
Participate in daily check-ins with outreach team members and Health & Human Services Assistant Manager
Maintain a binder of services for customer referrals
Participate in trainings such as HMIS training, SOAR training, SPDAT training, Department of Behavioral Health and other trainings to increase knowledge of street outreach, peer support, motivational interviewing, goal setting, harm reduction, etc.
Participate in DCPL front-line staff trainings related to homelessness, mental illness, etc.
Maintain confidentiality of records in conformity with the District of Columbia federal law and regulations
Performs other duties as assigned
Qualifications & Experience
The incumbent must possess a High School Diploma or GED plus a minimum of 1 year of experience providing direct customer service to customers preferably vulnerable populations. The incumbent must be a certified Peer Specialist, having completed training and certification through an accredited program. Experience working in an urban public library is preferred.
Additionally, the following is required:
Must be a certified Peer Specialist through an accredited behavioral health certification program. Proof of certification is required.
Knowledge of the policies, practices, and procedures of the Peer Outreach Program
Knowledge of the signs and symptoms of mental illness and substance abuse and the ability to assist the consumers to access care services
Ability to maintain individual consumer interaction records. Ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing
Ability to travel using public transportation
Working knowledge of technology (computers and cell phones)