Open Arms is searching for a part-time community-based Lactation Support Peer Counselors (LSPC) to serve the Latinx community. Lactation Support Peer Counselors work within their focus communities for the united goal of reducing barriers to lactation care, decolonizing lactation education, restoring cultural practices of lactation, and providing support through community care. The scope of practice for the LSPC includes providing lactation support through prenatal family and individual education, relationship building with the client to understand their lactation goals and concerns, and guidance through the baby’s first year. This candidate will be joining a team of LSPCs serving the Black community, American Indian/Alaska Native Community, Pacific Islander community, and Latinx community (currently hiring); the team is supported by co-Lead Lactation Support Peer Counselors, a Program Coordinator, and the Director of Programs.
Note about COVID-19 work environment: Since March 2020, Open Arms quickly adjusted to a remote-work model for all office support staff and an adapted visit model for home-visiting doulas. We are keeping a remote-work schedule until further notice and the leadership team is carefully evaluating options for a safe reopening with input from staff. Meetings are all conducted virtually and some of the responsibilities outlined below will be put on hold or modified while we continue working remotely. Birth support still continues to happen in person and there have been adjustments made for safe, in-person client visits. Open Arms will provide you with the technology and equipment you need to be able to work comfortably and safely from home. We have also encouraged staff to flex their schedules to accommodate for children being at home because of COVID-related impacts, and we support adjustments that parents need to make to juggle this complicated time. Feel free to discuss any concerns you have during the interview process.
Direct Service Work
- Maintain a caseload of 5-10 individual clients who are located in King County
- Provide visits both virtually and at the family's home on a designated timeline prenatally, and throughout the first year of the postpartum period
- Host Lactation Lounges weekly. Lactation lounges are open to the public and are partnered with providers within the Perinatal Collaborative
- Offer community education once a month in formats such as classes, webinars, social media, etc
- Help establish, attend, and assist with prenatal classes and lactation support groups
- Outside of normal business hours be available to new parents who are having lactation difficulties
- Provide basic, foundational techniques of lactation, and support to new parents, including guidance through various intersectionality's of lactation and the human experience: returning to work, family dynamics, attending school, etc.
- Help parents identify their own goals, challenges, barriers, and create solutions together
- Refer families to resources such clinical providers, Open Arms' Family Support Services, community partners, and program leads.
- Engage in continuous education and professional development on lactation, the perinatal period, and infant mental health
- Respect each family by keeping their information confidential
- Conduct screenings and provide prenatal, birth, and early parenting education to families as outlined by Lactation Support program guidelines
- Work within the LSPC scope of practice and follow safe working practices
- Perform other related duties as assigned
Data Management and Reporting
- Document weekly every client contact through our database and data collection forms
- Maintain accurate client records, including intakes, assessments, and client dismissals on a weekly basis
- Turn in additional documentation weekly for reimbursement (mileage)
- Report monthly grant requirements to program lead
- Comply with HIPPA standards of privacy to maintain client confidentiality
Program Support and Community Advocacy
- Take on leadership roles within the community by engaging with topics that focuses on social justice and equity as it relates to and impacts Open Arms families
- Assist in promoting lactation peer counseling through special projects and duties as assigned
- Occasionally speak at various panels, conferences, and community events and build relationships with community partners
- Provide feedback from the community to inform and improve culturally responsive services
- Occasionally attend conferences locally and out of state and share information back with colleague
- Candidates must be able to demonstrate that they are of and from the focus community including providing references and examples of prior community-based work
- Has lactated for at least one baby for at least 6 months
- Prior experience providing lactation support is highly desirable
- A 45-hour, 5-day foundational lactation course is required before taking on clients. New hires will be trained if this has not been completed.
- Ability to teach basic, foundational techniques of lactation such as position and latch, identifying the physiological process of lactation as well as recognizing challenges and red flags, feeding cues, and standard infant weight gain and elimination patterns
- Strong interpersonal skills to form trusting bonds with client families and to work in collaboration with a diverse group of colleagues.
- Strong ability to connect with underserved and underrepresented people, as well as a strong, intersectional approach to promoting racial equity, anti-racist, and anti-oppression work
- Deep understanding of, and ability to work with, the systems that serve communities impacted by trauma, racism, discrimination, and health disparities
- Must have a deep knowledge of and appreciation for culturally responsive services, especially during the perinatal period and early parenting period
- Experience in working with a diverse staff and with communities of color. Able to collaborate successfully with diverse team members. The applicant should have a strong racial, disability, gender and economic justice framework
- Commitment to anti-racist, anti-oppression, and de-colonization work with a focus on racial equity and reproductive justice, specific to birth and food justice
- Able to work independently on time management, scheduling, and following through on home/virtual visits
- High level of responsibility, communication, and follow through
- Demonstrate the ability to recognize complex situations and respond appropriately by seeking appropriate resources or referring out, as necessary
- Ability to maintain confidentiality around HIPAA-protected information
- Ability to meet program deadlines and expectations
- Ability to communicate in English verbally and written
- Have basic computer skills: Sending emails, editing documents, and attaching files to emails
- Valid Washington State Driver’s License and reliable transportation with current automobile insurance. This position requires frequent driving and visits to client homes
- Offer for employment is contingent upon successful completion of a background check.
Mental and Physical Requirements
The physical/mental demands and work environment described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
This position continuously requires interpersonal skills, teamwork, customer service, use of discretion, performing basic math, independent judgment and/or independent action, and reading, writing, speaking, and understanding English. Frequently requires independent decision-making and problem analysis to make recommendations for improvement and/or be involved in discussions around changes. The position requires creative thinking for resourcefulness and process improvements. Attention to detail also required.
This position continuously requires sitting, hearing (using assistive devices if needed), and repetitive motion of the hands/wrists. Open Arms is housed in a wheelchair accessible, scented building, with wheelchair accessible bathrooms. Access to reliable transportation will be required for work-related travel. Daily working conditions include an open-office work environment at our Seattle location on Beacon Hill*, normal office work, and frequent driving and travel to client visits and other locations as needed. Some tasks require the ability to lift items heavier than 10lbs. Employment is not dependent on the applicants’ ability to lift items.
*See note above about COVID-19 work environment