Employee News - June 30, 2020

A service of the King County Department of Human Resources

King County Employee News



Consider donating to the Emergency Leave Program 

The Emergency Leave Donation Program was developed so that King County employees who have been affected by COVID-19 can request donated leave. When the program debuted, many employees generously donated personal leave to support their colleagues. Now, the program is asking employees to again consider donating personal leave to the program, as the paid leave available is running low. 

Employees interested in supporting colleagues affected by COVID-19 can donate accrued sick and vacation leave in two different ways: 

For more information about supporting one another through the Emergency Leave Donation Program, visit the webpage here. See the FAQ information on how to mail or interoffice mail any completed forms. 


Increasing cases of COVID-19 in King County highlight the need to limit close contact 

Public Health—Seattle & King County continues to monitor cases, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 and has noted an increase in cases over the past two weeks. Public Health expects to see some increase in cases as we get back to work and other activities in the community because there are more opportunities for COVID-19 to spread.  

It’s been one week since King County moved into Phase 2 of the Governor’s Safe Start plan. With more re-opening of businesses, community activities and contact with one-another, Public Health—Seattle & King County is warning that the risk for infection has increased. 

As more businesses re-open and people get back to work and other activities in the community, there will be more opportunities for COVID-19 to spread, leading to an increase in cases. Public Health has already noticed an increase in cases the past two weeks. Read more.  


A call to #RecreateResponsibly guides reopening of King County’s parks and trails, and encourages ways to enjoy the outdoors safely

King County moved into Phase 2 of the state’s Safe Start plan on June 19. For the Parks Division of the Department of Natural Resources and Parks (DNRP), going through these phases has meant taking steps to encourage new habits while re-opening its parks and trails following the COVID-19 closures. As it re-opens, King County Parks has put several measures in place, including on-site signs, recreation policies, and operational adjustments. Parks is also part of the Recreate Responsibly Coalition, a statewide group that has come together during the pandemic to educate the public about the new rules of recreating during the coronavirus.

Frana Milan, who has been with King County since 2007 and currently supervises Parks’ Communications Team, shared about this work and the efforts to keep all County residents safe when enjoying the outdoors. “Our role has been to help make sense of what is happening, and how these different COVID-19 guidelines handed down by the State affect activities in parks and on trails,” she said. Read more.

woman girl

If you’re living with a long-term health condition, these free programs can improve your quality of life 

We know that for many people, daily life looks a little different right now. As we continue to adapt, it’s more important than ever to take care of ourselves — especially if you’re living with  a long-term health condition. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 6 in 10 adults in the United States have a long-term health condition (also known as an “ongoing condition” or a “chronic disease”). Doctors generally define long-term health conditions as lasting three or more months, and many don’t have cures. Diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and asthma are a few common examples. 

If you have a long-term health condition, you already know how it can affect your body. Ordinary things like going to work, running errands, taking care of your house, and even spending time with friends and family can be challenging or painful. They can also take a toll on your mental and emotional well-being. Frequent doctor’s appointments and the cost of treatment may cause extra stress. An activity you used to enjoy might drain your energy. And the uncertainty of your health can make you feel irritable or sad, which can affect your relationships 

For many people with long-term health conditions, small lifestyle changes can result in big improvements. If you’re not sure how to get started, Kaiser Permanente’s Living Well programs can help. These programs are free to employees and dependents. Visit the Balanced You blog for more information. 


Routine dental care again allowed 

Dentists began seeing patients for routine visits again on May 19. Prior to reopening, dental offices have implemented new protocols, including additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), to further protect the health and safety of you and your family members. 

Some employees have reported that their dentists are charging them for the additional PPE needed to prevent the transmission of COVID 19. Delta Dental is now paying dentists an additional amount for each visit to cover the cost of PPE. Covered members are not required to pay any additional charges for PPE. Delta Dental contracts with network dentists do not allow for dentists to charge members anything additional for supplies. 

You may wish to check with your dentist before your next dental appointment to see if they are going to charge you an extra fee for PPE. You can share the information above with your dentist, but if your dentist insists on charging you extra for PPE, you are not obligated to pay it. Read more.  


Webinar for employees: How are you? A
Conversation on Emotional Health, July 8 

As we continue to navigate life during the COVID-19 era, our mental and emotional health is likely shifting. We may experience waves of different emotions, ranging from fear and anxiety to grief and gratitude. And, we may struggle with how to understand or regulate them. 

Join Shawna Johnson, Balanced You Employee Health Specialist, and Heather Steffensen, Interim Employee Assistance Program Manager, for How are you?:  A Conversation on Emotional Health. During this live, interactive webinar facilitators will share some of the feelings that may be arising during the pandemic, techniques and tools to regulate them, and benefits and resources available to support King County employees. 

  • How are you?: A Conversation on Emotional Health, Wednesday, July 8, from 10 – 11 a.m. Register here.

For questions or more information, contact Balanced You at BalancedYou@kingcounty.gov
or call 206-263-9626.  


Fireworks safety in a pandemic 

Every year in the U.S., about 9,000 people are injured using fireworks at home, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Most of these injuries take place around the July Fourth holiday. This year, we have been dealing with the dual pandemics of COVID and racial injustice. Most public fireworks displays have been cancelled. If you decide to use consumer fireworks, please do so with caution and follow local rules and regulations. In addition, remember that social distancing, wearing a face covering and hand-washing are still very important. 

  • Fireworks purchased from approved firework stands are only allowed to be discharged in unincorporated King County on July 4, and they should be sold only by reliable Washington State- and King County Fire Marshal-licensed retailers 
  • Fireworks not purchased from a state-licensed fireworks retailors are not approved to be discharged in unincorporated King County. They may be considered explosive material. 
  • Fireworks are not allowed in King County Parks, per King County Code. 

If you choose to discharge fireworks on the 4th follow these rules and safety tips.

I have Pride! 

With social distancing, Pride may look and feel different this year. In our “I Have Pride” video, King County Metro riders, employees, and family members show we can still Ride with Pride! For more ways to engage with Metro and 2020 Pride, go to visit the King County Metro Matters blog. 

ride with pride

becu logo

BECU discount available for employees 

With BECU, King County employees who apply by Sept. 30, 2020, can receive a $150 statement credit on cash back credit cards. There is also a 0% intro APR for 12 months. This offer is valid July 1 - Sept. 30, 2020. Find out moreFree financial education webinars are also available: self-paced and in-person 

View all available discounts at www.kingcounty.gov/employeediscounts. 

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). 


Pet of the Week: Mouse

Hi! My name is Mouse and I am available for adoption. Generally, I'm a nervous kitty and I like to hide in the back of my kennel. But if you go slow and give me little scratches, I'm super duper friendly! With that being said, if you give me lots of awesome hidey spots at my new home I will be even friendlier because I will feel safer! My personality color is BLUE. I am a gentle and loving cat who likes to take things slow. I may get nervous in new situations, so I am looking for a family who understands that I might need some time to warm up. Once I get to know you, I will be a very devoted friend! 

Read more and view all available pets at www.kingcounty.gov/adoptapet. Have you or someone you know adopted a pet from RASKC? Let us know. We’d love to tell your story. 

Featured Job: Positive Family Connections Program Manager - PPM II TLT 

Salary$37.42 - $47.44 Hourly 

LocationSeattle, WA 

Job TypeTerm Limited Temporary, Full Time, 40 hrs/wk 

DepartmentDCHS - Community & Human Services 

Job Number2020SC11822 

DivisionChildren & Youth Services 

Closing7/19/2020 11:59 PM Pacific 

Learn more about this position or view all available positions. 

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