Employee News - June 17

A service of the King County Department of Human Resources

King County Employee News



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Juneteenth and Indigenous Peoples’ Day to be observed holidays beginning in 2022

Starting in 2022, King County government will observe two new paid holidays, Juneteenth and Indigenous Peoples’ Day, subject to available funding resources, bargaining, and potential impacts to existing county services.  

These new holidays reflect our work to build a more racially just King County by honoring and strengthening our understanding of our history. 

They will be dedicated as days of service and learning, and provide an opportunity for us to deepen our knowledge about our nation’s history, Black and Indigenous heritage and culture, and the many ongoing contributions of Black and Indigenous people in our region.

They will also help us sharpen our focus and commitment to undo the institutionalized racist practices and policies that harm Black, Indigenous, and People of Color today.

Click here to learn more. 

Juneteenth 2021 celebration

Watch the Juneteenth Celebration on demand

If you missed the King County Juneteenth Celebration featuring keynote speaker Dr. Marcia Tate Arunga, you can see it now on the King County TV Facebook page

Guest appearances include Delbert Richardson, founder of The Unspoken Truths, who gives a thoughtful history of Juneteenth, and musical performances by Acts on Stage. 

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Get your family vaccinated at Metro’s family day vaccine clinic on June 26

King County Metro is partnering with Public Health - Seattle & King County and their partner Discovery Health to host a family day vaccine clinic: 

  • Saturday, June 26 from 9 a.m.–1 p.m.
  • Metro's Safety and Training building at 11911 E Marginal Way S, Tukwila
  • Parking is available on site.

King County employees and their loved ones are invited to make an appointment to receive one of two COVID-19 vaccines. The Pfizer vaccine will be available for those 12 and older and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be available for those 18 and older.  There will also be a limited number of vaccines available for walk-ins but your preferred vaccine type cannot be guaranteed without an appointment.

Please register for the vaccine of your choice by visiting Discovery Health's registration portal. Click here for more information. 

Employee Spotlights

Martha Geoghegan shares why she got the COVID vaccine

Metro Vaccine Geoghegan

Lil Reds

Top Black-owned BBQ restaurant has Department of Executive Services connection

Cross-posted from Executive Services Express

You may have read a recent article in The Seattle Times about one of the top 20 Black-owned BBQ spots in the nation, right here in Seattle: “Lil Red’s Takeout & Catering.” The article takes off from Adrian Miller’s new book, “Black Smoke: African Americans and the United States of Barbeque” and focuses on the Rainier Avenue barbeque joint with a Jamaican twist.

What the article doesn’t say is that co-owner Lelieth Anderson -- the Lil in Lil Red's -- is one of Executive Services’ own. Anderson is a Maintenance Planner Scheduler in Fleet Services and has worked for Fleet since 1997. To read more of the Lil Red's story, click here


Whitney Abrams

Resources to support your mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being

from Whitney Abrams, Chief People Officer

I hope you saw the results from our annual Employee Engagement Survey that showed a clear connection between your engagement and the mission of the work you do. As a King County employee, you come to this work because you care about your community, and you want to make a difference.

Our engagement data, backed up by similar national data, tells us that we need to focus on these two elements – well-being and belonging – to help you thrive and feel welcome, engaged, and valued.

Click here to learn more about the survey results and the resources available to support you 

Looking for back issues of the Employee Newsletter?

Want to reread a story? Need to track down the link to a webinar or important resource? Previous editions of the Employee News going back to 2019 can be found here

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Mindfulness for Pandemic Fatigue

Do you feel exhausted, overwhelmed, like you can't concentrate? You are not alone! Join Mindfulness Northwest to explore the science behind how the pandemic is affecting our brains, and how mindfulness can help.

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Training for Managers: Burnout, Compassion Fatigue, and Resiliency

Join Balanced You for this interactive training and conversation tailored to People Leaders. Managers, Supervisors, and Team Leads will learn to identify burnout and compassion fatigue and learn strategies to build resiliency to help carry themselves and their employees through these difficult times.

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Get ready for summer hazards

Cross-posted from Executive Services Express

Despite the cool and wet “Juneuary” days we’ve had lately, weather forecasters say this summer is expected to be warm and dry. This could make for a slightly early start to fire season. Remember the smoke from wildfires, the excessive heat and the fires last year?

There are several things you can do to prepare, such as clearing away dry brush or making an air-filter fan.

Click here for tips on how to get ready.

Safety Tip 2

Safety at Work Tip #2: Be safe, plan your trip 

Check out the latest safety video with suggestions on how to be safe when walking to and from your workplace or other destinations.

A few of the top tips: 

  • Wear clothing and shoes that are comfortable, low profile and appropriate for the weather.    
  • Don’t carry too much. Overloading yourself can make you appear vulnerable.   
  • If you must carry a purse, carry it close to you.    
  • Never carry a wallet in your back pocket. 
  • Avoid walking alone. Walk or travel with a friend.    
  • In the downtown core, consider asking Facilities Management Division Security at 206-296-5000 for an escort, particularly when it's dark out.  

For more information, visit the Safety at Work webpage

Training Spotlight: Leader Mindset

Online – Leader Mindset for King County supervisors and managers sets a foundation that leading a team starts with understanding yourself and your responsibility to create a team culture of belonging where all employees can thrive. In this interactive webinar, participants will take part in engaging activities, small group discussions and action planning. This training is free and will be offered on multiple dates with the next session taking place

 Please visit our King County Eventbrite website and our Learning and Development website for more learning opportunities. For more information, contact the Learning and Development Team at KCTraining@kingcounty.gov or visit Learning and Development at www.kingcounty.gov/learning

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Security Tips: WiFi? Why Not? VPN is your friend

Using free public WiFi at a coffee shop or airport hot spot is great for convenience, but bad for security. Most free access points do not make use of encryption.

This is done for convenience and ease of access. If every person had to ask the barista or gate attendant for the WiFi key, it would get unruly, and no actual work would get done.

Keep in mind that you are sharing those wireless airwaves with anyone that is within range of your wireless communications. Click here to read more WiFi security tips.

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Featured Job: Juvenile Detention Officer

Salary: $59,592.00 - $75,462.40 Annually

Location: Seattle, WA

Job Type: Career Service, Full Time, 40 hrs/week

Department: DAJD-Adult & Juvenile Detention

Job Number: 2021AH13409

Division: Juvenile

Closes: Continuous recruitment

As a Juvenile Detention Officer, you have an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of detained youth and change the course of their future. Includes health benefits, retirement and more.

Learn more about this position or view all available positions


Pet of the Week: Meow

Hi, my name is Kitty Meow.  I'm a nine-year-old female Tabby/Manx mix. I'm shy, but loving and laid back. I do take some time to warm up, so I'm looking for a family who will give me a chance to go home with them and blossom. My caregivers at the shelter noticed that I do not seem to do well with other cats, so I may do best as the only cat in my new home.

You can find out more about me and my other friends on our website at www.kingcounty.gov/adoptapet.  Note that RASKC has moved to adoptions by appointment only.  If you have more questions, you can contact RASKC via phone at 206-296-7387 (PETS) or email pets@kingcounty.gov.

King County Headlines

Vaccination levels up, COVID-19 rates down: King County mask directive lifts on June 29

Additional Vashon beaches declared pollution free and safe for shellfish harvesting

Emergency Management helps protect restaurant workers 

Facilities Management Division and the Executive’s Office help regional film industry recover

Looking for back issues?

Click here for previous editions of the Employee News e-newsletter going back to 2019.

Contact us!

Interested in sharing a news story, or have a news tip? Click here to submit an item to Employee News. For questions or suggestions, please contact KCEmployees@kingcounty.gov.