Harm Reduction Counselor / Outreach Worker / Driver

Read Full Post: http://www.idealist.org/view/job/Pp94b5763cp/

This position is responsible for providing an array of mobile-based harm reduction services including intakes and ongoing assessments to people living with and at risk for HIV/AIDS, rapid HIV testing, syringe exchange, substance use and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) screenings and assessments, referrals, street outreach, and additional responsibilities as requested. Mobile services are conducted utilizing a team approach in the Prevention Division of Harlem United. Services are delivered to marginalized street-based populations, including active substance users, injection drug users (IDUs), people living with HIV/AIDS and/or Hepatitis C, sex workers, and other high-risk populations. Overdose education and relapse prevention is conducted on a regular basis to all clients with a history of substance use. This position is also responsible for driving the mobile units and assisting with vehicle maintenance.

Essential Job Functions

  • Support syringe exchange services in accordance with state, city, and agency regulations:
    • Monitor disposal of syringes being returned into the sharps container and count replacements
    • Distribute safer injection supplies
    • Safeguard inventory
    • Adhere to needle stick prevention guidelines
    • Provide HCV education, overdose education, and buprenorphine education;
  • Conduct overdose prevention training, documenting incidences of overdose;
  • Conduct a range of support and outreach activities to vulnerable street-based populations (IDUs, substance users, sex workers, etc.), including but not limited to the following:
    • Conduct individual alcohol and other drug interventions (AOD) with HIV+ clients; these are client-centered substance use/harm and risk reduction interventions to help initiate and maintain positive behavior change, and to empower clients with the information necessary to take control of their lives and their health;
    • Conduct individual low threshold interventions (LT) with high-risk and/or HIV- clients; these are client-centered substance use/harm and risk reduction interventions to help decrease risk in drug use, decrease risk in sexual practice, and encourage HIV testing within three months;
    • Conduct group level interventions with HIV+ clients; these are client-centered substance use/harm and risk reduction group interventions to help clients gain the knowledge and skills to positively impact their mental, physical and overall health and well-being;
    • Provide rapid HIV tests, including pre-and post-test counseling; make referrals and linkages to appropriate follow up care as needed;
    • Conduct substance use screenings and assessments and STI screenings and assessments with HIV+ and high-risk and/or HIV- clients; make referrals to treatment as needed;
    • Conduct individual overdose prevention trainings with HIV+ clients; these trainings help clients recognize, prevent, and treat an opiate overdose;
    • Conduct intakes and assessments and develop service plans in collaboration with the client; provide reassessments, service plan updates, reengagements, and case closures as needed;
    • Make referrals as needed to HIV primary care, drug treatment and detox, mental health services, case management, housing services, benefits, emergency needs and other services;
  • Conduct street-based outreach in an effort to engage clients into services; this includes conducting outreach with an integrated team in locations where our populations are visible and in need of services, distribution of materials and information about services;
  • Conduct a range of outreach activities to community members to foster good community relations and lessen fears of program activities in the neighborhoods served by the program, including
    • Providing information about program services
    • Asking how the program can serve the community
    • Asking what services are needed but currently lacking
    • Networking with community members
  • Providing relevant, accurate, and appropriate risk reduction information via counseling, distributing literature and outreach supplies, safer sex supplies, and explaining how supplies may be used to reduce risks;
  • Conducting surveys to assess relevant trends in the community so the program may be adapted to meet the continually changing needs of the community;

Other Responsibilities

  • Maintain all paperwork and submit on-time to Data Coordinator
  • Drive program vehicles and other vehicles as needed
    • Maintaining vehicle maintenance and upkeep, including timely reporting to supervisor of any problems with the vehicle (i.e. leaks, oil, break flasher)
    • Completing daily vehicle logs
    • Returning vehicle to parking lot with full tank of gas
    • Performing general weekly inspection to ensure lights, appliances, etc. are properly functioning
    • Ensuring vehicle is routinely cleaned and presentable
    • Ensure vehicles are sufficiently stocked with program supplies and paperwork on a daily basis
    • Maintain clean and organized vehicles at all times
    • Conduct inventory on a daily or weekly basis as needed
    • Attend trainings, service planning sessions, and other activities to ensure the provision of the most up-to-date and culturally appropriate services
    • Maintain the highest level of professionalism at all times
    • Participate in data-driven and clinical supervision, as well as departmental, divisional, and staff meetings
    • Other related duties as assigned

Education and Certification

  • CASAC or CASAC in training
  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • ValidNew YorkState driver’s license

Special Skills and Knowledge

  • Experience working with street-based populations, such as injection drug users, active drug users and sex workers
  • Bilingual in Spanish a plus
  • Knowledge of harm reduction and the risks associated with injection drug use and sexual behaviors
  • Ability to listen to and communicate clearly and respectfully with active drug users, community members, and agency staff
  • High level of self-motivation
  • Commitment to working as a member of a team
  • Flexibility and willingness to work primarily outdoors, including inclement weather conditions, and weekends when possible

How to apply

Harlem United is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Qualified candidates should forward cover letter and resume to Emma Roberts, Harm Reduction Coordinator, at eroberts@frostd.org.

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