Peer Specialist - #440056
US Veterans Health Administration
Date: 09/15/2021 11:30 AM
City: Fayetteville, Arkansas
Salary: $39,311 - $69,462 / year
Contract type: Full Time
Work schedule: Full Day
The position assists Veterans in treatment, based on the principles of recovery, wellness, and resiliency, by promoting self-determination, personal responsibility, and the empowerment inherent in self-directed recovery. Inspiring hope for recovery, wellness, and resiliency are achievable goals, the position can assist and empower Veterans, who are diagnosed with mental illnesses and/or co-occurring disorders.
The duties of the position includes, but are not limited to:
- Teaches and role model the value of every individual's recovery experience.
- Models effective coping techniques, holistic wellness, and self-help strategies.
- Assists in obtaining services that suit the individual's personal recovery and wellness needs.
- Assists Veterans in exploring their interests and options for making improvements in life functioning areas such as housing, employment, relationships, and community engagement (i.e. assist Veterans in exploring options for obtaining decent and affordable housing and make referrals to appropriate VA housing programs; support Veterans' vocational choices and refer them to appropriate resources to support employment).
- Informs Veterans about VA and community supports and resources, including how to effectively utilize them in the recovery and wellness process. Community resources may include, but are not limited to, consumer-run organizations, self-help and mutual support services, Social Security offices, Department of Family and Children Services, YMCAs, libraries, restaurants, Veteran Service Organizations (VSOs), and the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD).
- Assists Veterans in developing empowerment skills, identifying strengths, and combating stigma through self-advocacy. This is accomplished through regular individual or group meetings and using role playing/modeling techniques.
- May provide support of Veterans' vocational choices and assists them in choosing a job matching their strengths, overcoming job-related anxiety by reviewing job applications, providing interview tips, and practice sessions.
- Serves as liaison to community-based organizations to develop and/or foster Veterans' community integration, natural supports, and self-reliant strategies.
- Assists Veterans in building social skills in the community that enhance community re-integration, using techniques such as role playing and social skills training.
- Performs outreach activities to establish community partnerships that will provide health care services for the Veterans in the community and inform Veterans of the availability of those health care services and other benefits.
- Handles crisis interventions for Veterans and addresses other emergent situations through immediate consultation with the supervisor or most available clinical provider.
Work Schedule: Monday to Friday, 8:00am - 4:30pm; May work occasional evenings and weekends to meet program needs. Work schedule is subject to change based on the needs of the agency.
Virtual: This is not a virtual position.
Position Description/PD#: Peer Specialist/PD00065A, PD00066A, PD00067A, and PD00068A
Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized
Permanent Change of Station (PCS): Not Authorized
Financial Disclosure Report: Not required
Job family (Series)
0102 Social Science Aid and Technician
Conditions of Employment
- You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job
- Selective Service Registration is required for males born after 12/31/1959
- You may be required to serve a probationary period
- Subject to background/security investigation
- Selected applicants will be required to complete an online onboarding process
- Participation in the seasonal influenza and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Vaccination programs are requirements for all Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Personnel (HCP)
To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement, 10/01/2021.
Time-In-Grade Requirement: Applicants who are current Federal employees and have held a GS grade any time in the past 52 weeks must also meet time-in-grade requirements by the closing date of this announcement. For a GS-06 position you must have served 52 weeks at the GS-05. For a GS-07 position you must have served 52 weeks at the GS-06. For a GS-08 position you must have served 52 weeks at the GS-07. For a GS-09 position you must have served 52 weeks at the GS-08. The grade may have been in any occupation, but must have been held in the Federal service. An SF-50 that shows your time-in-grade eligibility must be submitted with your application materials. If the most recent SF-50 has an effective date within the past year, it may not clearly demonstrate you possess one-year time-in-grade, as required by the announcement. In this instance, you must provide an additional SF-50 that clearly demonstrates one-year time-in-grade.
Note: Time-In-Grade requirements also apply to former Federal employees applying for reinstatement as well as current employees applying for Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA) appointment.
BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR PEER SPECIALISTS, GS-102-6/9:
A. Statutory Requirement- Section 405 of Public Law 110-387, as codified in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(13), established that to be eligible to receive appointment to a Peer Specialist position, a person must:(1) Be a veteran who has recovered or is recovering from a mental health condition; and(2) Be certified by -
(a) a not-for-profit entity engaged in peer specialist training as having met such criteria as the Secretary shall establish for a peer specialist position; or (b) a State as having satisfied relevant State requirements for a peer specialist position.
B. Length of Experience as a Consumer of Mental Health Recovery Services. Veterans eligible under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(13) must have spent a minimum of 1 year in personal recovery from a mental health condition.
SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE REQUIREMENT FOR ALL GRADES (6/7/8/9)
In addition to the basic requirements, candidates must have specialized experience or education in order to qualify. Specialized experience is progressively responsible, post-personal mental health recovery experience as a mentor providing counseling to support peers in mental health and/or addiction recovery, a recovery advocate directly involved with consumers of mental health services, a psychiatric therapy aide, or equivalent work involving in-person communication to support others in mental health recovery.
Substitution of Experience:
GS-06: Six (6) months of graduate education or a 1-year post-bachelor's degree internship for experience required for the GS-6. (TRANSCRIPTS REQUIRED).
GS-07: Applicants may substitute one (1) full year of graduate education for the experience required for the GS-7 level. (TRANSCRIPTS REQUIRED). GS-08: Applicants may substitute one and one-half years of graduate education for the experience required for the GS-8 level. (TRANSCRIPTS REQUIRED).
GS-09: Applicants may substitute two full years of graduate education or a master's degree for the experience required for the GS-9 level. (TRANSCRIPTS REQUIRED).
You will be rated on the following Competencies for this position:
Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religions; spiritual; community; student; social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.
Note: A full year of work is considered to be 35-40 hours of work per week. Part-time experience will be credited on the basis of time actually spent in appropriate activities. Applicants wishing to receive credit for such experience must indicate clearly the nature of their duties and responsibilities in each position and the number of hours a week spent in such employment.
Physical Requirements: The work is primarily sedentary. Typically, the employee sits to do the work. There may be some walking, standing, bending, carrying of light items (such as books, papers), and accessing transportation. The work may require occasional use of Department of Veteran's Affairs approved behavioral management techniques with Veterans who present a danger to self or others. The applicant must be able to perform primarily light and sedentary duties with occasionally moderate physical demands, exercise patience, and control emotions, with reasonable accommodations if necessary, without endangering the health and safety of the applicant or others.
For more information on these qualification standards, please visit the United States Office of Personnel Management's website at https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/classification-qualifications/general-schedule-qualification-standards/
A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.
Note: Only education or degrees recognized by the U.S. Department of Education from accredited colleges, universities, schools, or institutions may be used to qualify for Federal employment. You can verify your education here: http://ope.ed.gov/accreditation/. If you are using foreign education to meet qualification requirements, you must send a Certificate of Foreign Equivalency with your transcript in order to receive credit for that education. For further information, visit: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ous/international/usnei/us/edlite-visitus-forrecog.html
VA supports the use of telework as a way to help attract and retain talented individuals in public service, increase worker productivity, and better prepare the agency to operate during emergencies. This position may be authorized for telework. Telework eligibility will be discussed during the interview process.
Receiving Service Credit or Earning Annual (Vacation) Leave: Federal Employees earn annual leave at a rate (4, 6 or 8 hours per pay period) which is based on the number of years they have served as a Federal employee. VA may offer newly-appointed Federal employee's credit for their job-related non-federal experience or active duty uniformed military service. This credited service can be used in determining the rate at which they earn annual leave. Such credit must be requested and approved prior to the appointment date and is not guaranteed.
Special Employment Consideration: VA encourages persons with disabilities to apply, including those eligible for hiring under 5 CFR 213.3102(u), Schedule A, Appointment of persons with disabilities [i.e., intellectual disabilities, severe physical disabilities, or psychiatric disabilities], and/or Disabled veterans with a compensable service-connected disability of 30% or more. Contact the Agency Contact for information on how to apply under this appointment authority via the Selective Placement Coordinator.
The Interagency Career Transition Assistance Plan (ICTAP) and Career Transition Assistance Plan (CTAP) provide eligible displaced Federal/VA competitive service employees with selection priority over other candidates for competitive service vacancies. To be qualified you must submit appropriate documentation (a copy of the agency notice, your most recent performance rating, and your most recent SF-50 noting current position, grade level, and duty location) and be found well-qualified for this vacancy. To be well-qualified: applicants must possess experience that exceeds the minimum qualifications of the position including all selective factors, and who are proficient in most of the required competencies of the job. Information about ICTAP and CTAP eligibility is on OPM's Career Transition Resources website at http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/workforce-restructuring/employee-guide-to-career-transition/.
Placement Policy: The posting of this announcement does not obligate management to fill a vacancy or vacancies by promotion. The position may be filled by reassignment, change to lower grade, transfer, appointment, or reinstatement. Management may use any one or any combination of these methods to fill the position.
It is the policy of the VA to not deny employment to those that have faced financial hardships or periods of unemployment.
This job opportunity announcement may be used to fill additional vacancies.
Veterans and Transitioning Service Members: Please visit the VA for Vets site for career-search tools for Veterans seeking employment at VA, career development services for our existing Veterans, and coaching and reintegration support for military service members.
For more information on the "Who may apply" eligibility requirements, please refer to the OHRM Status Candidates and Other Candidate Definitions document.
If you are unable to apply online, view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.
How You Will Be Evaluated
You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.
IN DESCRIBING YOUR EXPERIENCE, PLEASE BE CLEAR AND SPECIFIC. WE WILL NOT MAKE ASSUMPTIONS REGARDING YOUR EXPERIENCE.
Narrative responses are not required at this time. If you are referred for consideration, you may be asked to submit additional job related information, which may include, but not limited to; responses to the knowledge, skills and abilities; completion of a work sample, and/or contact for an interview.Your resume and/or supporting documentation will be verified. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating or consideration for employment.
Background checks and security clearance
Drug test required
Position sensitivity and risk
Non-sensitive (NS)/Low Risk
Trust determination process
To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:
- DD-214/ Statement of Service
The following documents are accepted, and may be required if applicable to your eligibility and/or qualifications for this position. Please use this checklist to make sure you have included other documents required for your application, such as a copy of your transcript (if using education to qualify), SF-50's (current/former Federal employees), documentation to support Veterans Preference claims, or ICTAP/CTAP documentation (for displaced Federal employees). You will not be contacted for additional information.
- Cover Letter
- DD-214/ Statement of Service
- Disability Letter (Schedule A)
- Disability Letter (VA)
- OF 306
- Other (2)
- Proof of Marriage Status
- Separation Notice (RIF)
- SF-50/ Notification of Personnel Action
SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action (if applicable for Time in Grade and/or Eligibility):
- Most recent SF-50 if you are a current or former Federal employee
- An SF-50 showing your time-in-grade eligibility must be submitted with your application materials. If the most recent SF-50 has an effective date within the past year, it may not clearly demonstrate you possess one-year time-in-grade, as required by the announcement. In this instance, you must provide an additional SF-50 that clearly demonstrates one-year time-in-grade
- Award 50's do not provide sufficient information and will not be accepted for the purpose of verifying time-in-grade.
- Examples of appropriate SF-50's include:
- Within grade increases at the highest grade held; or
- Promotions with an effective date more than one year old; or
- SF-50's at the highest grade held with an effective date more than one year old.
Resume Requirement: * Your resume must include the following information: Job title, description of duties, beginning and ending date (month/year) of employment; and average hours worked per week.
If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:
Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education
Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating
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This job is open to
Career transition (CTAP, ICTAP, RPL)
Federal employees who meet the definition of a "surplus" or "displaced" employee
Federal employees - Competitive service
Current or former competitive service federal employees
Federal employees - Excepted service
Current excepted service federal employees
Individuals with disabilities
Internal to an agency
Current federal employees of this agency
Land & base management
Certain current or former term or temporary federal employees of a land or base management agency
Peace Corps & AmeriCorps Vista
Clarification from the agency
Status Candidates (Current permanent employees of the Department of VA including VA Title 38, Title 38 Hybrid, and Canteen employees serving on excepted appointments; All federal employees serving on a Career/Career-Conditional appointment; Former competitive civil service employees eligible for reinstatement; Veterans eligible under the VEOA, as 30% Disabled Veterans, and under a VRA; Those eligible under the Employment Program for People with Disabilities; Those eligible under CTAP/ICTAP)