Mental Health Therapist, #404 - HIRING BONUS

The Mental Health Therapist at Project Network facilitates weekly parenting group(s), family therapy, and parenting and other life skills trainings to help clients understand problems, define goals, and develop realistic action plans. Therapists guide clients in the development of skills and strategies for living with mental health challenges, evaluate the effectiveness of therapy and/or treatments and the accuracy and completeness of diagnoses, modifying as necessary. This can be a fast-paced program in a high crisis setting. This individual will have a caseload of ten or more clients and families, and at times also facilitate other groups and support the milieu.

Program/Dept:  Project Network

Location:  Inner NE Portland

Status:  Regular, part-time, non-exempt

Compensation:  $24.54 - $26.69 per hour, plus pro-rated comprehensive benefits$1,000 sign-on bonus.


Provide substance abuse and mental health treatment services for adults in outpatient or residential settings. Responsible for assessment, treatment planning, provision of counseling (individual, family, and group) services, consultation with care providers and coordination of multiple service providers for his/her assigned client caseload; and for keeping accurate, timely records.

Essential Responsibilities

(Must be able to be performed with or without reasonable accommodation.)

  • Client evaluations, including initial intake interviews, formulating diagnoses, and identifying appropriate treatment services; notify client, significant others, care givers, and/or care providers of diagnoses and initial treatment recommendations in a timely manner; and complete written narrative of evaluation, obtain necessary authorizations for disclosure.

  • Collect information about individuals or clients, using interviews, case histories, observational techniques, urinalysis, and other assessment methods. Observe and evaluate client's performance, behavior, social development, and physical health.

  • Analyze data such as interview notes, test results, and reference manuals to identify symptoms and to diagnose the nature of clients' co-occurring mental health and substance abuse problems.

  • Identify and diagnose mental health and substance abuse disorders, using information obtained from interviews, tests, records, and reference materials. Address legal issues, such as child abuse and discipline, assisting with hearings and providing testimony to inform custody arrangements. Provide accurate screenings for health, gambling, trauma, and domestic violence issues, and make referrals to appropriate services providers as necessary.

  • Provide referral services to clients and their families, e.g., residential services, psychiatric services, health care, employment services, housing, recovery support services, etc. Maintain awareness of community referral resources.

  • Develop therapeutic Individual Service and Support Plans (ISSP), based on clients' interests, abilities, strengths and integrated mental health and substance abuse needs. ISSPs will be evidence-based using clinical experience and knowledge, and will have measurable goals and objectives based on the diagnosis and will specify type, frequency, intensity, and duration of services. ISSPs will client-driven and follow-ups will be completed on time, assessing the quantity and quality of services provided.

  • Confer with clients, significant others and treatment team to develop plans for post treatment activities to maintain recovery.

  • Counsel individuals or families, using evidence-based practices, to help them understand problems, define goals, and develop realistic action plans. Guide clients in the development of skills and strategies for resolving substance abuse problems.

  • Facilitate or co-facilitate group treatment services, using evidence-based/manualized treatment models with demonstrated effectiveness for the population served. Demonstrate proficiency in using evidence-based practices, as evidenced by observation, fidelity rating scales, client report, and client outcomes.

  • May be responsible for service coordination. Coordinate/collaborate with physicians, staff, families, caregivers, referents, etc.  Maintain chart notes related to external contracts, obtaining pertinent records from other treatment and tracking clients' involvement, follow-through and progress in varied treatment activities. Provides regular and timely progress reports to referents when appropriate.

  • Evaluate the effectiveness of counseling or treatments and the accuracy and completeness of diagnoses, modifying plans and diagnoses as necessary. ISSPs must be updated at least every three months. Behavioral Health Assessments must be updated at least annually.

  • Document and maintain client records in electronic healthcare system within 24 hours of meeting with client to ensure compliance with agency and contract guidelines and confidentiality.

  • Provide training to staff, caregivers, and family regarding issues of co-occurring substance abuse and mental health disorders as they relate to clients.

  • Provide crisis intervention, including appropriate consultation and safety planning for clients at risk for dangerousness. May serve as Clinician of the Day.

  • Serve as back-up for other staff when needed.

  • Administer and submit urinalyses with minimal errors. Evaluate and communicate results within agency guidelines.

  • Check e-mail and voicemail throughout the workday, responding as needed within appropriate timeframe

  • Continually increase level of cultural sensitivity, awareness, and competency providing culturally appropriate evaluation, treatment, resources and support linkage and to clients.

  • May need to travel between sites or in the community.

  • May need to work evenings and/or weekends, depending on job assignment.

  • Meets performance standards for direct service, documentation (including progress notes, assessments, ISSPs, status reports, and authorization requests) proficiency in clinical model and evidence based practices, quality of care (including engagement and retention) and teamwork as defined in the Performance Review.

  • Participate in regular individual and team meetings with supervisor. Attend informational and clinical meetings which may include all staff and team meetings, consultation with other staff and required trainings.

  • Qualified licensed clinicians may be requested to provide licensure supervision as part of their regular position in compliance with the rules of their licensing board.

Work Activities

  • Assisting and Caring for Others

    • Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to clients. Responsible for rendering assistance to clean up duties involving the bodily fluids spill kit

  • Communicating with Supervisors and Peers

    • Providing information to supervisors and coworkers by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person

  • Documenting/Recording Information

    • Entering and maintaining information in written or electronic form

  • Gathering Information

    • Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources

  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships

    • Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time

  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    • Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems

  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work

    • Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work

  • Processing Information

    • Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data

  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others

    • Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others

  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    • Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events


(Equivalent education and/or experience may be substituted. These requirements are representative of the minimum levels of knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform this job successfully, allowing the employee to perform each task proficiently.)

  • Master's degree in counseling, social work, or related area of specialization

  • QMHP credential through the State of Oregon

  • CADC (or equivalent national certification) or a submitted application for CADC, with a formal plan to obtain certification within two years of hire

  • May require LCSW or LPC

  • At least 1 year of experience in broad range of clinical interventions and mental health assessments specific to the client population

  • If recovering from a substance abuse related disorder, ability to demonstrate continuous sobriety under nonresidential, independent living conditions for the immediate past two years

  • Knowledge, skills, and abilities demonstrating competence in:

    • Treatment of mental health and substance-related disorders, including client evaluation

    • Treatment methods for individual, family, and group therapy to address chemical dependency and mental health problems

    • Individual, group, family, and other counseling techniques

    • Program policies and procedures for client case management and record keeping as well as accountability for recording of client information consistent with those policies and procedures

    • Familiarity with theory and/or concepts of substance abuse prevention

    • Medications commonly used by client population

    • Maintaining case management in accordance with federal, state, and/or funding source requirements as well as LifeWorks NW policies and procedures

    • Complying with federal and state confidentiality rules and regulations

    • Community resources and treatment agencies enabling appropriate referrals for specific client needs

  • Demonstrated ability to effectively communicate and provide culturally-competent treatment services to diverse client populations

  • If and/or when working in a culturally specific program, a demonstrated understanding of cultural values and norms, including but not limited to knowledge and understanding of and sensitivity to:

    • Acculturation and generational issues

    • Resources and appropriate support linkage available

    • Specific barriers, which may lead to lack of access and engagement

    • Effective inner-cultural communication skills, allowing for advocating for culturally diverse clients

  • Good computer skills, including a functional knowledge of Microsoft Outlook and Word, and the ability to master proprietary software such as the electronic health record system

  • Ability to perform essential functions of job without creating a direct threat to the safety of self or others

  • May require access to a car and ability to drive between sites or in the community


  • Therapy and Counseling

    • Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of substance abuse disorders, including evidence-based practices for effective treatment

  • Psychology

    • Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders

  • Education and Training

    • Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects

  • English Language

    • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words and grammar

  • Customer and Personal Service

    • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services

  • Law and Government

    • Knowledge of applicable laws and Oregon Administrative Rules relating to mental health and substance abuse treatment services

  • Clerical

    • Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records

  • Sociology

    • Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins


  • Active Listening

    • Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times

  • Social Perceptiveness

    • Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

  • Critical Thinking

    • Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems

  • Speaking

    • Talking to others to convey information effectively

  • Monitoring

    • Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action

  • Service Orientation

    • Actively looking for ways to help people

  • Reading Comprehension

    • Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents

  • Writing

    • Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience

  • Active Learning

    • Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making

  • Judgment and Decision Making

    • Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one


  • Problem Sensitivity

    • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem

  • Inductive Reasoning

    • The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events)

  • Deductive Reasoning

    • The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense

  • Fluency of Ideas

    • The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity)

LifeWorks NW strives to create a culture of inclusion, and is continually working towards greater diversity across staff and leadership to ensure that our employees reflect our communities.

This position description is not intended to be, and should not be, construed as an all-inclusive list of responsibilities, skills, or working conditions associated with the position. While it is intended to accurately reflect the activities and requirements of the position, management reserves the right to modify, add, and/or remove duties as necessary. Job responsibilities are subject to possible modification to reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities. This document does not create an employment contract, implied or otherwise, other than an "at will" employment relationship.

LifeWorks NW is an Equal Opportunity Employer