Substance Abuse Specialist

North Santa Barbara County, Mid Santa Barbara County, South Santa Barbara County
Santa Barbara
Full Time
New Beginnings Counseling Center

Substance Abuse Specialist Position – 40 hours per week/full-time, non-exempt position

Certified Substance Abuse Counselor to provide case management and ongoing supportive services to aid homeless, formerly homeless veterans and individuals who are struggling with mild to moderate substance abuse and/or co-occurring mental health challenges in Santa Barbara County.


  • Interview clients to assess needs
  • Support clients in overcoming alcohol and drug dependency
  • Ensure efficient and effective delivery of services to all clients
  • Collect data and assist in tracking outcomes and program performance measures as assigned
  • Refer clients to other support services such as medical evaluation and treatment, social services and employment services and other community resources.
  • Participate in client advocacy and other collaborative task force activities
  • Present and provide information to community members and organizations about the program
  • Coordinate with inter-agency programs and activities and other duties as assigned.
  • Provide substance abuse support to veterans and/or homeless individuals
  • Communicate and collaborate with family members when applicable and with proper releases
  • Record and enter relevant information, all interactions and services with and on behalf of the client into HMIS/other digital platforms within timelines set forth by agency policies and procedures
  • Understand the different roles within the interdisciplinary team and acts with professional boundaries
  • Create mental health and/or substance use treatment and services plans involving case managers, other team members, client & family as applicable to empower the client to achieve vocational, recreational daily living and interpersonal goals
  • Facilitate internal or outside referrals to evidence-based behavioral health services as clinically indicated
  • Adhere to ethical principles about confidentiality, informed consent, compliance and relevant laws and all agency policies and procedures
  • Maintain client privacy by adhering to HIPAA Privacy Practices
  • Performs all related duties as assigned by program management


  • Certified Substance Abuse Counselor – Certification required.
  • Possession of a master’s degree in social work, clinical counseling, psychology or family therapy from an accredited university preferred
  • A minimum of two years’ experience working as a certified substance abuse counselor preferred
  • Bi-lingual is helpful but not required.
  • Previous experience working with the (formerly homeless) homeless and/or homeless veterans and families preferred
  • Must be proficient in the following computer applications – Microsoft Word and Excel, HMIS a plus

Work hours are predominantly Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm, although there will be some nighttime and weekend hours on occasion to attend community events and/or to manage any off-hour client crises that may arise. Must have a working vehicle with liability insurance and pass a background check. Bi-lingual a plus but not required. Starting salary range is $26 – $32 per hour DOE and credentials with medical and dental benefits provided, 403b participation and match, as well as generous paid time off. Position begins asap.

This is not a remote position. Much of the work will take place in the field countywide.

Send resume, cover letter and a list of three professional references to If we feel you are a good match for the position, you will be contacted to schedule an interview.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, political affiliation or beliefs, sex, age, physical handicap, medical condition, marital status or pregnancy (as those terms are defined by the California Fair Employment and Housing Act — Government Code Section 12900-12996), except where such discrimination is based on a bona fide occupational qualification.

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