Employee News - June 2, 2020

A service of the King County Department of Human Resources

King County Employee News



A message from the Exec: Let’s keep working together to make it right

On Sunday, following his Friday message to County employees, Executive Constantine shared this message on Twitter with the people of King County:

(Preface: I’m sorry for the many people who gathered to peacefully, earnestly protest injustice - an act of civic responsibility of the highest order - only to have the day & message hijacked by violent opportunists. This isn’t about the rioters.)

We all know what we saw in Minneapolis. A court will make the legal determination, but we all saw black man’s life - George Floyd’s life - slowly and painfully ended, without justification, and in the name of the state - on our behalf.

And we all recognize that it likely would not have happened that way if he was white. And that it’s not an isolated outrage, and not limited to law enforcement, and not confined to any one corner of this country. You see that. I see that. Read more.


Working together to repair our region 

On Sunday, King County Executive Dow Constantine joined King County employees and volunteers to clean up and repair damage done to County buildings and resources. Executive Constantine shared his experience:

I was in downtown Seattle this morning to personally thank King County employees and volunteers who are repairing our facilities that were damaged by violent opportunists who hijacked last night’s peaceful protest against racial injustice. Some of our facilities – a childcare center, a homeless shelter, a homeless day center, bus stops – had broken windows or were spray-painted. Yet thanks to the rapid response by our employees and volunteers, we are on track to reopen all our downtown services tomorrow morning. The resiliency and dedication of our staff and partners means we can continue to offer the services that keep the people of King County safe and healthy even during a global pandemic. I encourage us to unite as a region for a lasting change that will bring America closer to the promise of our County’s namesake. 


White folks being anti-racist: How do we become useful? 

Written by Richard Gelb, Environmental Public Health Planner, Department of Public Health, ProTech17 

The systems of whiteness and racism in society have been more greatly revealed through the COVID-19 emergency. We see the historic and ongoing racial differences in the quality, affordability, and access to housing, health care, jobs, education, transportation, and technology resulting in disproportionately higher risk of infections for people of color. 

King County’s Antiracist White Action Group (ARWAG), one of several official Employee Resource Groups, helps white employees train themselves away from harmful behaviors and become more poised to constructively engage in change. Read more. 

Pictured: Author Richard Gelb, bottom left, with other members of the Antiracist White Action Group (ARWAG). 

Standing for justice as we keep our community safe from spread of COVID-19 

Public Health – Seattle & King County shared perspectives from our local leadership about George Floyd’s tragic death, yet one more in an endless string of violence perpetrated against Black people in our country, and answered questions about participating in protests while reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19. 


In recent days, community members joined protests locally and across the country in response to the death of George Floyd and so many Black lives that have been taken through senseless, violent and racist acts. This racism and hate comes on top of the stress, burden and illness being inequitably experienced by Black, Indigenous, Latinx and other people of color during the pandemic, the result of centuries of systemic racism. Read more. 


Resources available to identify and address COVID-19 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have put together a useful website to support people during the coronavirus pandemic. It includes a list of possible symptoms to watch out for, such as fever, coughing, fatigue, and shortness of breath. View the site here. 

The website shares how anyone can have mild to severe symptoms, but that older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk. Additional symptoms can include: 

  • Muscle or body aches 
  • Headache 
  • New loss of taste or smell 
  • Sore throat 
  • Congestion or runny nose 
  • Nausea or vomiting 
  • Diarrhea 

To better support employee health and well-being, Regence BlueShield and Kaiser Permanente have also developed resources for members. Regence has put together a COVID-19 website and symptom tracker tool. Both can be viewed here. Kaiser Permanente has put together a COVID-19 website, which can be viewed here. 


PeopleSoft HCM outage this weekend, June 5-7 

To allow for system maintenance, the PeopleSoft system will not be available the weekendJune 5-7. 

During this planned outage, the Business Resource Center (BRC) will apply vendor updates and maintenance. 

This work will begin on Friday, June 5, at 3 p.m. and is scheduled to be completed by 6:30 a.m. on Monday, June 8 

The system will not be available for access by any County staff during this outage window. There will be a communication sent out to all County staff when the system becomes available. 

We realize that this outage impacts all PeopleSoft users and we appreciate your understanding and support. 


MOS and MTA Certifications available online 

Through a partnership with the Washington Library System, Career Support Services and the Administrative Professionals Committee now offer employees the opportunity to connect with the King County Library and Seattle Public Library for MOS and MTA certification exams, as well as online study guides. Employees can earn their Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) and Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) certifications from home at no cost, as well as access study guides and practice tests to help earn the certification. As a reminder, employees may also use the online learning website www.Lynda.com at no cost with their library card. 

For questions about the certifications, please contact the King County Library at www.kcls.org or the Seattle Public Library at www.spl.org. For additional questions, please email AdministrativeProfessionals@kingcounty.gov. 


Interactive webinar series for managers and supervisors, June 3  

The Learning and Development Team within the Department of Human Resources is offering a live, interactive webinar series for managers and supervisors entitled Leading Remotely in Times of Uncertainty. The next webinar in this series, Staying Steady for Yourself and Your Team, will be held  Wednesday, June 3.   

This webinar will focus on how being a leader is a tough job during the best of times. In order to effectively lead a team, it is helpful to use self-care skills that can enable leaders to stay steady during the COVID-19 response- and beyond. By the end of this session, participants will be able to describe the importance of self-care as a leader, identify ways to support their team, and customize a plan of action to take back to their team.  

The webinar is free but space is limited. For more information, contact the Learning and Development Team at KCTraining@kingcounty.gov or visit www.kingcounty.gov/learning. 

Tech Tip: Reminder about regular emails from KCIT vendor KnowBe4.com 

Each Wednesday all King County email users will receive an email from authorized King County vendor KnowBe4.com about phishing scams. King County Information Technology (KCIT) has partnered with KnowBe4.com to regularly provide information and training to employees about phishing scams and other email red flags. KnowBe4.com is a leading industry expert in security awareness training. Its mission is to help employees to make smarter security decisions, every day, and keep the County’s and employees’ information secure.  

Employees are encouraged to read through the helpful information in each email and review the security tips presented. Employees can also rest assured the email comes from a verified source, and is not spam, as it does not feature the external email notice.   

For questions or more information, contact the KCIT Helpdesk or call 206-263-4357 (3-HELP). 

Featured Job: Quality Assurance Engineer 

Salary$91,897.94 - $116,486.24 Annually 

LocationSeattle, WA 

Job TypeCareer Service, Full Time, 40 hrs/week 

DepartmentDES - Executive Services 

Job Number2020AB11610 

DivisionBusiness Resource Center 

Learn more about this position or view all available positions. 

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