Peer Support Specialist

Peer Support Specialist

Job Code: PSS - 103

Revision Date: November 9, 2022

Starting Salary: $12.58 hourly; $26,175 annually
FLSA: Non-Exempt


We are an agency committed to innovative behavioral health services in trauma-informed care that promote healing and recovery to instill a sense of empowerment and foster a lifelong sense of resilience.

General Description

The role of this job is to provide direct care services, training, consultative and other professional activities of rehabilitation treatment program and functions of a professional member of the multidisciplinary team assisting physicians and other professional/non-professional personnel in a rehabilitation treatment program. Depending on the assignment, the incumbent performs a variety of supportive tasks.

Peer Support Specialist assist 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 recovery experience, and supporting them in advocating for themselves to obtain effective services.

Duties and Responsibilities

The functions listed below are those that represent the majority of the time spent working in this position. Management may assign additional functions related to the type of work of the position as necessary.

  • Advocates for clients and assists them in times of crisis or fear. This may include accompanying them in their appointments with doctor or other staff, reducing a crisis situation and advocating their needs.
  • Performs outreach in communities, informing people of the services available to the client.
  • Assists individuals in choosing, obtaining and keeping wellness and healthy lifestyle related goals.
  • Supports individuals through the process of identifying health and wellness related goals.
  • Asks facilitative questions to support people gain insight into their own personal situations.
  • Empowers clients to find solutions for health problems and concerns they are facing.
  • Helps to find solutions by asking questions that give insight into wellness status.
  • Assists in identifying steps to take to achieve a health and wellness related goal.
  • Uses a variety of methods, tailored to the individual, to move through the process of setting and reaching health and wellness related goals.
  • Provides structure and support to promote personal progress and accountability.
  • Compiles and shares wellness and healthy lifestyle resources for peers and other staff or supporters.
  • Selectively uses self-disclosure to inspire and support.
  • Completes all required documentation in a timely, legible manner.
  • Educates other staff about the recovery process and the damaging role that stigma can play in undermining recovery.
  • Visits community resources with people using services to assist them in becoming familiar with potential opportunities.
  • Ensures confidentiality of individual information.
  • Assists in the orientation process for persons who are receiving mental health and/or co-occurring disorders services.
  • Educates and engages individuals in the recovery process to recognize early triggers and signs of relapse and use of individual coping strategies as an alternative to more restrictive services.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Minimum Education and Experience Requirements

Requires High School graduation or GED equivalent. 

Peer Support Specialist positions require employee to be a self-identified current or former user of mental health or co-occurring services who can relate to others who are now using those services. Experience as a mentor providing services to support others 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, preferred.

Required Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of trauma-informed theories, principals, and practices (includes multi-faceted understanding of concepts such as community trauma, intergenerational and historical trauma, parallel processes, and universal precautions), preferred.

Physical Demands

Performs sedentary work that involves walking or standing some of the time and involves exerting up to 10 pounds of force on a regular and recurring basis or sustained keyboard operations.

Unavoidable Hazards (Work Environment)

  • Involves routine and frequent exposure to:
    • Bright/ dim light, dust, and pollen.
    • Other extreme hazards not listed above.

Special Certifications and Licenses

  • Peer Support Specialist positions require a certification as a Certified Peer Specialist within one (1) year of employment.
  • Must possess and maintain a valid state Driver's License with an acceptable driving record.
  • Must be able to pass a TB, criminal background and drug screen.

Americans with Disabilities Act Compliance (ADA)

Emergence Health Network is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  ADA requires Emergence Health Network to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified persons with disabilities. Prospective and current employees are encouraged to discuss ADA accommodations with management.

Other Job Characteristics

  • Staffing requirements, including criteria that staff have diverse disciplinary backgrounds, have necessary State required license and accreditation, and are culturally and linguistically trained to serve the needs of the clinic's patient population.
  • Credentialed, certified, and licensed professionals with adequate training in person-centered, family centered, trauma informed, culturally-competent and recovery-oriented care.

Note: This Class Description does not constitute an employment agreement between the Emergence Health Network and an employee and is subject to change by the Emergence Health Network as its needs change.