Mental Health Systems, Inc.

  • SUD Counselor

    Job Locations US-CA-San Diego
    Req No.
    Regular Full-Time
  • About our Program and Organization

    About Action Central

    Assertive Community Treatment Intensive Outreach Needs (ACTION) Central, a hybrid integrated program, provides permanent supportive housing integrated with Assertive Community Treatment plus Intensive Outreach Needs services for homeless adults (18 years of age or older) in San Diego’s Central and North Central regions. The ACTION program offers treatment services to homeless adults with a Serious Mental Illness or co-occurring diagnosis, and Drug Medi-Cal certified Alcohol and Other Drug treatment recovery services to homeless adults who have a primary diagnosis of a Substance Use Disorder. Services include housing outreach, management/engagement of sponsor-based rental subsidies, and treatment recovery services.


    About Mental Health Systems

    Mental Health Systems is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization committed to delivering innovative mental health, substance abuse, supportive housing, veteran, and recovery services. MHS provides over 75 broad-ranging programs that offer safety-net services and employs over 800 dedicated individuals across 6 California counties; Contra Costa, Fresno, Kern, Kings, San Bernardino, and San Diego. For 40 years, Mental Health System’s client-centered, strengths-based solutions have been designed to offer comprehensive, culturally competent programs that embody our core values of Excellence, Hope, Action, Innovation, Integrity, and Dignity. Our mission is to improve the lives of individuals, families, and communities impacted by behavioral health challenges.  MHS has a commitment toward reducing stigma and improving access to care using the principle of “whatever it takes”. 

    Job Summary and Responsibilities


    The Substance Abuse Counselor provides drug and alcohol counseling to adult clients authorized to receive substance abuse treatment under a non-residential substance abuse or mental health program. Counselors interact with clients on a day-to-day basis providing individual and group counseling, as well as engaging in rehabilitation activities. The Substance Abuse Counselor provides clients with orientation, training, substance abuse recovery skills and information, and leadership necessary to provide clients with the ability to recover from substance abuse addiction. The Substance Abuse Counselor may be assigned additional counseling duties.




    • Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.
    • Maintain productivity of Counseling and Case Management staff by distributing workload and assignments, contributing to budget planning, and monitoring client records for contractual compliance and quality improvement.
    • Assist in Counseling and Case Management staff performance evaluations and disciplinary action.
    • Provide orientation to the treatment program and the concept of sobriety.
    • Develop and implement treatment plans. Develop a comprehensive treatment plan for each assigned client and evaluates the progress of the individual clients according to the treatment plan.
    • Provide counseling and recovery services, information and education, vocational training, and relapse prevention.
    • Complete data entry, client documentation, team supervision and collaboration, and monthly reporting as directed by Program Manager.
    • Develop community resources for continued community treatment.
    • Successfully functions as a team member by providing client transportation in MHS vehicle and/or personal vehicle, providing on-call phone coverage for staff consultation, and after-hours work as scheduled by the Program Manager.
    • Assist other staff in dealing with problematic client behavior.
    • Maintain a caseload as prescribed by the Program Manager.
    • Provide interventions including individual and group counseling, crisis intervention, collateral services, and other relevant sobriety-related services to clients.
    • Document, review, and chart client progress and complete all required paper work on time. Prepare treatment and discharge plans and discharge summaries.
    • Designate new target goals for clients consistent with overall treatment goals. Assure clients are informed of inappropriate behavior. Initiate appropriate and timely interventions.
    • Provide input to develop and improve program servicing and delivery.
    • Schedule daily activity and recreational activities and short-term special groups.
    • Comply with all MHS and program rules, policies and procedures including HIPPA standards.



    • BA/BS in a social or behavioral science, addictionology, or a related field preferred.
    • Possess or be in the process of obtaining certification for substance abuse treatment, such as CCAPP, CAADE, or similar professional certification.
    • Minimum of 1 year of professional experience providing direct, indirect, or support services for alcohol and drug programs dealing with individual recovery or alcohol and drug problem reduction (i.e., residential treatment facility administrator, counselor, social worker, analyst, etc.);


    • Sixty (60) semester hours (credits) of college education, plus three (3) years’ experience working in an alcohol and drug recovery, treatment, or case management program.
    • In-depth knowledge of substance abuse treatment methodologies and diagnostic techniques, and familiarity with San Diego substance abuse services system.
    • Valid California driver’s license and current auto insurance per contract requirements.
    • Knowledge of Microsoft Office and EHR software.
    • Ability to problem solve and react appropriately to emergency situations.
    • Ability to work independently and effectively collaborate with a team


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