Children & Families Unit Lead Worker
The Lead Worker is responsible for assisting the Unit Manager. In addition to their primary caseload responsibilities, he/she will be responsible for performing the lead/consultative worker responsibilities listed below. This will include, but is not limited to, assessing & screening incoming child abuse/neglect ACCESS reports and incoming child welfare reports using the Wisconsin Child Protective Services Access & Initial Assessment Standards and the Wisconsin Child Protective Services Safety Intervention Standards.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
Under the guidance of the Children & Families Unit Manager, the lead worker has the authority to make screening decisions to accept or not accept a report of child maltreatment or other report for further assessment. These decisions must be completed within a timeframe which assures that the immediate threats to child safety are addressed. In all cases, this must be made within 24 hours of receipt of the report. This includes making case assignments to other unit staff.
• Provide “mentoring” of new social workers in the Unit under the guidance of the Unit manager. This will include but not be limited to providing 1-1 mentoring, training, reviewing department & community resources including making on-site visits to agencies, reviewing applicable policy and procedures, paperwork, etc. Be the “go to” person when the Unit Manager is not available.
• Pursuant to DCF 56.22 shall be trained and certified in the use of the State of Wisconsin’ s Departments standardized assessment tool for children placed into foster care. Provide first review and approval of the tool prior to forwarding to the Unit Manager and/or rate setter. This includes review of the child’s case record, interview and review information from other staff who have interviewed the child, child’s family, foster parent or other out-of-home care provider, the child’s team and the licensing agency.
• Under the guidance of the Children & Families Unit Manager act as a designee regarding Child Protective Services Protective Plans, Safety Assessments, Analysis & Plans and Emergency removals for Youth Justice and sign approvals in the manager’s absence.
• Stand in for the unit manager at various committee meetings/workgroups as requested.
• Other time is spent in unit staff meetings, supervision meetings for case monitoring, information sharing and special projects.
SKILLS AND ABILITIES:
Basic everyday living skills, the ability to understand and follow directions; reading and writing (reports) is necessary. Interviewing, counseling, and communication skills are needed. It is also important to have knowledge of juvenile and criminal law, social work practice, and federal and state policy and procedures especially as it relates to child abuse/neglect and child welfare. Skill in the use of general office equipment, including but not limited to: telephone, copy machine, calculator, dictation equipment, computer, camera, measuring devices, fax machine and automobile. A video camera may be used to tape interviews in some cases.
QUALIFICATIONS: EDUCATION: Bachelor’s degree in Social Work or closely related field that allows for certification.
EXPERIENCE / JOB KNOWLEDGE: Must be certified or certifiable as a Social Worker in Wisconsin. Through training and experience have the knowledge and ability to perform complex and specialized casework services with considerable independence. Must have the ability to deal with crisis situations.
PHYSICAL DEMANDS: Over 75% of time is spent talking, hearing, visually observing and sitting. 50% of time is spent using low fingering (writing) and reaching. About 10% of time is spent standing, walking, stooping, kneeling, crouching and low lifting. In unusual situations, it is necessary to grapple, crawl, and run.
Management’s assignment of essential functions is not designed to limit the manner in which duties may be accomplished. Management shall comply with all applicable workplace laws and shall communicate with any employee with a disability to determine the availability of a reasonable accommodation(s) to allow the employee to perform the essential functions of the job.
ENVIRONMENTAL DEMANDS: Over 75% of work is done inside. Work is done outside about 10% of time. In unusual situations there is a threat of physical attack or injury from clients.