Health & Environmental Investigator I/II

King County   Auburn, WA   Full-time     Health Care Provider
Posted on January 5, 2022
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Summary

The Environmental Health Services Division is seeking to fill several Career Service, Term Limited Temporary (TLT),Special Duty Assignment (SDA), and/or Short-Term Temporary (STT) positions. We are seeking a skilled, enthusiastic and dedicated Health & Environmental Investigator to provide outreach, technical assistance and/or regulatory oversight in one of the following Programs:

  • Food & Facilities – To conduct inspections, provide educational services and respond to complaints/illnesses at retail food establishments, recreational facilities and schools,  
  • On-site Sewage System OSS Operation & Maintenance - to investigate OSS failures and monitor OSS maintenance, 
  • Solid Waste, Rodent and Zoonotic Diseases - to provide regulatory oversight and outreach for solid waste handling facilities, illegal dumping and rodent investigations, waste characterization, and/or pet business inspections, 
  • Hazardous Waste Management - to provide technical assistance and outreach about residential and/or commercial hazardous waste management,
  • Health Engagement Action and Resource Team (HEART) - to conduct on-site and phone consultations on environmental health topics for COVID-19 mitigation methods at sites that serve people living or formerly living homeless, or 
  • Environmental Health Covid-19 Recovery - to provide technical consultations and educational site visits to help small businesses, schools, childcares, and faith organizations improve their indoor air quality and ventilation.
The HE&I I/II positions will enable businesses, property owners, service providers, and other residents in King County to protect public health and comply with environmental health codes by providing education, inspection, and compliance services. The ideal candidate will have a strong understanding of environmental health principles and practices and be skilled at applying scientific understanding and code requirements to a variety of contexts while ensuring that community members, industry professionals, business owners, and other partners receive quality service.
 
To learn more about the programs included in this posting, please visit the following sites.

ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH SERVICES DIVISION
Through the work of over 150 dedicated employees, the Environmental Health Services Division identifies and sustains environmental conditions that promote health equity and healthy people and communities in Seattle and King County. Our vision is healthy, safe, and vibrant communities that are free of health disparities based on race, gender or economic status. The Division’s core values include equity and social justice, integrity, community service, collaboration, a supportive work culture, and learning from each other and the communities we serve.


COMMITMENT TO EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
As the only jurisdiction in the world named after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the most influential civil rights leaders in our nation's history, King County is a vibrant international community with residents that represent countries from around the world. It is a region with increasing diversity that cherishes the traditions of many cultures.
 
We have a deep commitment to equity and social justice and advancing practices, strategies, and policies that promote fairness, justice, and opportunity for all – in our workplaces and our communities. With this commitment, King County has adopted a pro-equity agenda to advance regional change and ensure that residents from vulnerable communities are incorporated into our emergency planning and public outreach efforts.
 
To learn more, please visit http://www.kingcounty.gov/equity.

Job Duties

  • Provide culturally competent education, technical assistance, and/or regulatory compliance services. Assist with development of sector-specific educational materials, guidance, and/or trainings.
  • Interpret and convey complex regulations or technical recommendations and provide clear written and oral guidance and direction to industries, public agencies, business owners, service providers, and general public. 
  • Conduct on-site inspections or site visits and review reports to ensure compliance or alignment with current public health and environmental codes, regulations, and/or policies.
  • Respond to public complaints and inquiries on environmental health matters.
  • For regulatory positions, determine if regulatory violations have occurred, document violations, establish schedule for corrections, and follow up with technical assistance or enforcement to ensure that schedule is met.
  • Build working relationships with key contacts in the community, sector professionals, partners, and stakeholders. Attend and contribute to internal and external stakeholder meetings, meetings with facilities, and public outreach events.
  • Use computerized database management systems, write, and review reports, and maintain accurate records in a timely manner.
  • Bring a trauma informed and compassionate approach to working with diverse customers, clients, and other King County residents.
  • Incorporate an equity lens to the work by prioritizing services to marginalized communities, including low income, refugee, people of color and other communities at the greatest risk of harm from exposure to environmental risks.
  • Must be able to follow all COVID-19 safety and personal protective equipment (PPE) protocols when working in the field such as mask use, eye protection, and other PPE as required.

Experience, Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills

  • Prior education or experience in one or more environmental health/public health disciplines such as living environment, indoor air, food safety, on-site wastewater, facility and site evaluation, emergency preparedness, infection control and prevention, disease outbreak investigations, etc.
  • Knowledge of environmental health principles and federal, state, or local environmental health regulations, codes and/or policies.
  • Demonstrated ability to interpret and communicate environmental health topics and provide quality customer service for a variety of audiences including English Language Learners (ELL) and non-English speakers.
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct environmental health investigations using established regulations, codes, and practices and make sound, reasonable determinations in evaluating and securing correction of unsatisfactory conditions (if appropriate).
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with customers, clients, and/or permittees.
  • Demonstrated ability to appropriately respond to conflict and navigate difficult situations when interacting with property owners, business owners or other constituents.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills and demonstrated experience writing, analyzing, or reviewing reports.
  • Ability to maintain accurate records (written and photographic) in computer database systems such as Excel, Envision Connect, JotForm or similar database program.
  • Experience with Microsoft Suite products such as Word, SharePoint, MS Teams, etc.
  • Ability to effectively work independently and as a collaborative member of a team.
  • Current REHS/RS certification or eligibility to take the REHS/RS exam within one year of employment (see additional information in Licensing/Certification Requirements).
 
DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS
  • Specific training in Environmental Health, Environmental Sciences, Environmental Engineering, Microbiology, Epidemiology, Food Science or other related field.
  • Knowledge of environmental and food sampling techniques; sample handling procedures; data collection, analysis, and interpretation; and safety procedures for working around and with hazardous materials. 
  • Ability to identify and address community members’ individual and systemic barriers to compliance or participation.
  • Training or knowledge of trauma informed communications, behavior change, and/or motivational interviewing. 
  • Fluent in one or more non-English languages most spoken in King County (Spanish, Vietnamese, Somali, Russian, Chinese, Korean, Amharic, Arabic, and/or Ukrainian) 

LICENSING/CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS
  • For HEI II: Registered Sanitarian (RS) certificate from the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) or the Washington State Environmental Health Association (WSBRS) is required at the time of hire.  (All required licenses and certifications must be maintained in active status without suspension or revocation throughout employment.) 
  • HEI I: obtain Registered Sanitarian Certificate within 1 year of hire date from the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) or the Washington State Environmental Health Association (WSBRS). See REHS/RS eligibility requirements at https://www.neha.org/node/1209 or http://www.wsbrs.org/getreg.html.
  • Valid Washington State driver's license by time of hire.

Supplemental Information

Forbes recently named King County as one of Washington State's best employers.

Together, with leadership and our employees, we're changing the way government delivers service and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. Are you ready to make a difference? Come join the team dedicated to serving one of the nation's best places to live, work and play.

Guided by our "True North", we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We value diversity, inclusion and belonging in our workplace and workforce. To reach this goal we are committed to workforce equity. Equitable recruiting, support, and retention is how we will obtain the highest quality workforce in our region; a workforce that shares and will help advance our guiding principles--we are one team; we solve problems; we focus on the customer; we drive for results; we are racially just; we respect all people; we lead the way; and we are responsible stewards. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement
King County Executive Branch employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are the successful candidate for the position you applied for, the County will send you a conditional offer letter.

As a condition of employment, prior to a final offer of employment, you will be required to:

  • submit proof of vaccination, or
  • have an approved request for medical or religious exemption and an approved accommodation. Philosophical, political, scientific, or sociological objections to vaccination will not be considered for an exemption or accommodation.

People are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 two weeks after receiving the final dose of a vaccination approved by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The Executive Branch includes employees in the Executive branch, the Assessor's Office, Elections, the King County Sheriff's Office, and the Executive Office.

King County is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer
No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. Our EEO policy applies to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, selection for training, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation.

To Apply
If you are interested in pursuing this position, please follow the application instructions carefully. If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact the recruiter listed on this job announcement.

Who May Apply 
This position is open to all qualified candidates. This posting will create a list of qualified candidates that may be considered for selection in additional career service, term limited temporary (TLT), short-term temporary (STT), or special duty assignment (SDA) up until June 1, 2022.   First review of applications will be done for applications received by January 3rd, 2022.  


Application Process
The following items are required to be considered for this vacancy:
  • An electronic application through www.kingcounty.gov/jobs or www.governmentjobs.com (use the "Apply" link) including work history and position duties.
  • A cover letter describing your interest in this position and how do you meet the required qualifications for this job. 
  • Responses to supplemental questions.
Your application may be rejected as incomplete if you do not include the relevant information in the application. Cover letters and/or resumes are not accepted in lieu of a completed application. Applications and/or Supplemental Questionnaires that state "see my resume" or "see my personnel file" are considered incomplete and will not be accepted.
  • The selection process may include but is not limited to: evaluation of application materials and supplemental questions, interviewing, and testing. For more information on our selection process, please refer to www.kingcounty.gov/depts/health/jobs/hiring.
  • Regular and reliable attendance, effective communication skills, and the development of effective working relationships are requirements of all Public Health positions.
  • Staff may be required to play an active role in the event of a public health emergency, which may include changes in responsibilities, work location, and working hours.

Necessary Special Requirements:
  • The selected candidate will be required to submit to a thorough background investigation. Records are not automatically disqualifying.
  • Candidates selected are required to pass a pre-employment physical exam.   
  • Employees are required to protect the privacy and security of protected health information as defined in State and Federal Law.
  • Employees are required to adhere to OSHA/WISHA guidelines including but not limited to completing required training on time.

Working Conditions and Physical Requirements 
  • These positions may require the ability to perform work duties both indoors in an office environment and in the field in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Most of these positions will require the incumbent to drive for field work.
  • Exposure to individuals from the public who are upset, angry, agitated, and sometimes hostile, requiring the use of conflict management and de-escalation skills.
  • These positions may require the incumbent to occasionally travel by ferry. 

Work Schedule
These positions typically works 8 hours per day, 40 hours per week anytime between 8:00 am to 6:00 pm. The schedule requires flexibility for weekend and evening work. This position is subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act and is overtime eligible. The normal workweek is 40 hours, Monday – Friday. Evening and weekend work may be required.

 
Work Location
Hybrid work locations including telecommuting, field work and occasional work at Downtown Seattle, 401 5th Ave., Suite 1100, Seattle or Eastgate Public Health Center, 14350 SE Eastgate Way, Bellevue (for On-site Sewage System Programs)

The Environmental Health Division reserves the right to place staff at worksite locations or transfer staff to new worksite locations that best support the efficient delivery of services.
 
Employees will have access to shared workspaces at Public Health worksites throughout the County and may also utilize home deployment.   There will be situations where the employee is required to report to a County worksite.  Employees must reside in WA state and within a reasonable distance to their King County worksite to respond to workplace reporting requirements.
 
Employees will be provided with a County issued laptop and must maintain a workspace with an internet connection (access may be supplemented in some situations) where they can reliably perform work and remain available and responsive during scheduled work hours.  Please note that when an employee conducts work that is likely to bring them in contact with another individual, safety precautions are required by the department in alignment with the Public Health Directive from the Seattle & King County Public Health Officer. King County is doing its part to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and remains committed to reducing our carbon footprint.
 
 To support employees during this time King County has a robust collection of tools and resources to support working remotely.  The individual selected for this opportunity will be joining an innovative and progressive team.


Salary Information (depending on qualifications):
 $32.16 - $40.77 Hourly: Health and Environmental Investigator I
 $37.97 - $48.13 Hourly: Health and Environmental Investigator II 


Union Affiliation:
This position is represented by Protect Local 17 Union.

Contact:
If you have questions about these positions, please contact Sinang Lee, Project/Program Manager IV at sinang.lee@kingcounyt.gov or 206-263-1192. If you have questions regarding the recruitment process, please contact Nic Horea, Senior Human Resource Analyst at nicolae.horea@kingcounty.gov or 206-263-8736. 

King County offers a highly-competitive compensation and benefits package designed to meet the diverse needs of our employees and support our employees' health and well-being.  Eligible positions receive the following benefits and have access to the following programs:

  • Medical, dental, and vision coverage: King County pays 100% of the premiums for eligible employees and family members
  • Life and disability insurance: employees are provided basic coverage and given the opportunity to purchase additional insurance for both the employee and eligible dependents
  • Retirement: King County employees are eligible to participate in a pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems and a 457(b) deferred-compensation plan
  • Transportation program and ORCA transit pass
  • 10 paid holidays each year (plus 2 personal holidays)
  • Generous vacation and paid sick leave
  • Paid parental leave, family and medical leaves, and volunteer leave
  • Flexible Spending Account
  • Wellness programs
  • Onsite gyms and activity centers
  • Employee giving program
  • Employee assistance programs
  • Flexible schedules and telecommuting options, depending on position
  • Training and career development programs
For additional information about employee benefits please visit our Benefits, Payroll, and Retirement Page.

This is a general description of the benefits offered to eligible King County employees, and every effort has been made to ensure its accuracy.  If any information on this document conflicts with the provisions of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the CBA prevails.  Also, in the event of any incorrect information in this document, applicable laws, policies, rules, CBAs, or official plan documents will prevail.
 
NOTE:  Benefits for Term Limited Temporary (TLT) or Short Term Temporary (STT) positions, including leave eligibility and/or participation in the pension plan through the Washington State Department of Retirement Systems, will vary based upon the terms and details of the position. Short Term Temporary positions are not eligible for an ORCA transit pass.
 
For inquiries about the specifics of this position, please contact the recruiter identified on this job posting.

01
Can you provide proof that you possess a current, Valid, WA State Driver License or the ability to obtain one prior to starting work if selected for this position?
  • Yes
  • No
02
Are you:
  • Registered Sanitarian (RS) by the Washington State Board of Registered Sanitarians, OR
  • Currently certified as a Registered Environmental Health Specialist/Registered Sanitarian (REHS/RS) by the National Environmental Health Association, OR
  • None of the above
03
If you answered "none of the above" for question # 1, are you able to obtain one of the certifications listed above within twelve (12) months of hire?
  • Yes
  • No
  • N/A
04
Do you speak any languages other than English?
  • Yes
  • No
05
If you answered "yes" to questions #4, what language(s) and to what extent are you fluent in that/those language(s)? If you answered "no", please type N/A
06
Do you have experience performing environmental health investigations?
  • Yes
  • No
07
If you answered "yes" to question #6, please describe your experience. What skills do you apply to properly diagnose issues and impacts to health and to work effectively with those involved in the investigation? If you answered "no", please type N/A.
08
Do you have experience using permitting, reporting, and data management software for data collection, analysis, and interpretation?
  • Yes
  • No
09
If you answered "yes" to questions #8, what software have you used for permitting, reporting, data management, and/or data analysis? If you answered "no", please type N/A.
10
Do you have experience communicating technical findings, recommendations, or corrective actions (oral and written) to a resident, business owner, or client who is an English Language Learner or non-English speaker?
  • Yes
  • No
11
If you answered "yes" to questions # 10, please describe what approaches you took to convey the information and what were the outcomes of that interaction. If you answered "no", please type N/A.
12
Do you have experience interpreting and gaining compliance with federal, state, and/or local regulations OR alignment with recommended government guidance that pertains to environmental health?
  • Yes
  • No
13
If you answered "yes" to questions # 12, please describe which codes or guidance you have experience with and give an example(s) of your work to gain compliance or alignment with one of these codes or guidance. If you answered "no", please type N/A.
14
Please rate which three Environmental Health Division Program(s) listed in the position summary most interest you:
  • Food & Facilities
  • On-site Sewage System OSS Operation & Maintenance
  • Solid Waste, Rodent and Zoonotic Diseases
  • Hazardous Waste Management
  • Health Engagement Action and Resource Team (HEART
  • Environmental Health Covid19 Recovery
15
Out of the three options you've selected above, please rank the programs in order, starting with the one that most interests you.
16
Are you applying to this position as an eligible Current or Previous King County Employee Priority Placement Program Participant AND Is this position the same or lower percentage of full-time when compared to the position held at the point of the notification of layoff AND Do you possess the skills and abilities to qualify for this position?
  • Yes, I was given a layoff notice from my role at King County AND I am within two years of the effective date of my layoff. AND The position I was laid off from was the same or a higher percentage of FT status when compared to this one.
  • No.
17
If you answered yes to the question above and you are applying for this position as a Priority Placement Participant, to be considered, you must provide the following three pieces of information in the space provided: 1. The title you held when you received your layoff notice 2. The department you worked in 3. The effective date of your layoff

Required Question