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Peer Specialist

Expired Job

Department Of Veterans Affairs Bakersfield , CA 93301

Posted 5 months ago

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  • Duties

HelpDuties Summary

The position is located in the HUD_VASH program within the Community engagement and Reintegration Service at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. The incumbent will serve in a developmental capacity to provide the individuals with the knowledge, skills, and abilities need to perform the full range of routine assignments found at the full performance level. The full range and level of key functions will not be delegated to this incumbent.

Learn more about this agency


The incumbent functions as an interdisciplinary team member, assisting physicians and other professional/non-professional personnel in a rehabilitation treatment program. Peer Specialists perform a variety of therapeutic and supportive tasks that include assisting their peers in articulating their goals for recovery, learning and practicing new skills, helping them monitor their progress, assisting them in their treatment, modeling effective coping techniques and self-help strategies based on the specialist's own recover experience, and supporting them in advocating for themselves ot obtain effective services. The incumbent functions as a role model, exhibiting competency in personal recovery and use of coping sills, services as a consumer advocate, provides consumer information and peer support for veterans in outpatient and inpatient settings. This individual must have the ability to assist others in treatment based on the principles of recovery and resiliency. by inspiring the hope that recover and resiliency are achievable goals, the incumbent can assist others who are diagnosed with metal illness or co-occurring disorders to achieve their personal recovery goals by promoting self-determination, personal responsibility, and the empowerment inherent in self-directed recovery. The incumbent performs a wide range of tasks to assist peers of all ages from young adult to old age, in regaining independence within the community and mastery over their own recovery process.

Promotion Potential: The selectee may be promoted to the full performance level without further competition when all regulatory, qualification, and performance requirements are met. Selection at a lower grade level does not guarantee promotion to the full performance level.

Work Schedule: Monday

  • Friday 0800am

  • 4:30pm

Position Description/PD#: Peer Specialist / PD 11228-A, 11229-A, 11230-A, 11231-A

Relocation/Recruitment Incentives: Not Authorized

Financial Disclosure Report: Not required

Travel Required

Occasional travel

  • You may be expected to travel for this position.

Supervisory status


Promotion Potential

  • Job family (Series)
    0102 Social Science Aid and Technician

  • Requirements

HelpRequirements Conditions of Employment

  • You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply for this job

  • Designated and/or random drug testing may be required

  • 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


To qualify for this position, applicants must meet all requirements by the closing date of this announcement, 09/13/2018.The incumbent duties are but are not limited to:

  • Practical understanding of some of the principles, methods, and techniques of psychology, social work, sociology and counseling but do not require specific formal education.

  • Ability to use wide range of methods or tools commonly taught in formal peer support training certification programs is essential.

  • Demonstrates ability to establish and maintain effective person-to-person relationships, skill on oral and written communication, ability to inspire confidence and motivate individuals, and capacity for leadership.

  • Knowledge of signs and symptoms of metal illness (i.e., auditory and visual hallucinations, aggressive talk and behavior, thought of self-harm or harm toward others, isolation) and the ability to assist the Veteran to address symptoms of using strategies such as positive self-talk.

  • Knowledge of the Recovery process and ability to facilitate Recovery Dialogues using common recovery tools.

  • Knowledge of and the ability to use effective communication skills to teach and engage in problem solving and conflict resolution strategies to support individual Veteran in self-directed recovery.

  • Knowledge of crisis-orientated counseling, including methods for effective triage and the standards for handling violent or suicidal patients safely.

  • Knowledge of Management and Prevention of Disruptive Behavior techniques.

  • Awareness of eligibility requirements for patients services relevant to the behavioral health program.

  • Understanding how roles of ethnicity, race, spirituality, gender, sexual orientation, local community and other sub-cultures may influence recovery.

  • Maintain a working knowledge of current trends and developments in the mental health field by reading books, journals, and other relevant materials.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY: In accordance with 38 U.S.C. 7402(d), no person shall serve in direct patient care positions unless they are proficient in basic written and spoken English.

STATUTORY REQUIREMENTS: 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.

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.

NOTE: You must provide evidence that you are certified in peer counseling as described in the VA qualification standard for Peer Specialist (see above), to officials of the Department of Veterans Affairs, with your application package.

SPECIALIZED EXPERIENCE: In addition to the basic requirements, candidates must have at least 1 year of specialized experience equivalent to the next lower graded level. Qualifying specialized experience includes: 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. Note: Participation in community, social service, and similar volunteer activities that meets the definition of specialized experience is creditable applicant experience.

Note: 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.


Graduate education or a post-bachelor's degree internship meets the specialized experience required for GS-6/9 only in those instances where it is directly related to the work of the position. Six (6) months of graduate education or a 1-year post-bachelor's degree internship meets the requirements for GS-6. One full year of graduate education meets the requirements for GS-7. One and one/half years of graduate education meets the requirements for GS-8. Two full years of graduate education or a master's degree meets the requirements for GS-9. One year of full-time graduate education is considered to be the number of credit hours that the school attended has determined to represent 1 year of full-time study. If that information cannot be obtained from the school, 18 semester hours should be considered as satisfying the 1 year of full-time study requirement. Part-time graduate education is creditable in accordance with its relationship to a year of full-time study at the school attended.


Equivalent combinations of specialized experience and education as described for each grade level may be used to meet the total requirements for this position. This education must have been obtained in an accredited college or university. Your experience must be detailed and transcripts are required.

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 higher graded position you must have served 52 weeks at the next lower graded position. 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.

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.

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 applicant must be able to perform primarily light and sedentary duties with occasionally moderate physical demands, exercise patience, and control emotions, with reasonable accommodation if necessary, without endangering the health and safety of the applicant or others.


A transcript must be submitted with your application if you are basing all or part of your qualifications on education.

PLEASE NOTE: 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 (particularly positions with a positive education requirement). Therefore, applicants must report only attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Applicants can verify accreditation at the following website: All education claimed by applicants will be verified by the appointing agency accordingly. 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.

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Peer Specialist

Expired Job

Department Of Veterans Affairs