Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist I (#RS1024)
$23.01-$27.97 Hourly / $3,988.83-$4,848.45 Monthly / $47,866.03-$58,181.46 Yearly


Under general supervision, provides group and individual substance abuse prevention services in San Joaquin County and does related or other work as required in accordance with Rule 3, Section 3 of the Civil Service Rules.


Incumbents in this class perform basic substance abuse prevention functions including leading group educational and counseling activities, providing individual counseling to youth and adolescents, and carrying out prevention program activities. This level is distinguished from the Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist II, in that the higher level class develops, coordinates and monitors programs with community groups, may lead other staff, may develop grant proposals and performs more complex reporting. At this level, incumbents provide basic outreach to groups and individuals. Incumbents may also be trained to develop and implement components and programs of prevention services.


  • Conducts individual and group counseling sessions, discusses individual and family behavioral, social, and psychological issues; conducts educational group sessions dealing with legal, social, and community issues; conducts alcohol and drug awareness educational sessions.
  • Conducts interviews; obtains program participant background information; may complete financial information; collect fees.
  • Maintains program participant records, prepares reports and correspondence.
  • May learn to coordinate a component of San Joaquin County Prevention Services.


Education: Successful completion of 60 semester or 90 quarter units at an accredited college or university with a minimum of 12 semester or 15 quarter units in psychology, sociology, social science, youth and human development or other closely related field.

Experience: One (1) year of experience in youth and/or community development, substance abuse counselor, social crisis or prevention worker. 

Substitution: Completion of a certificate program in human services and/or substance abuse counseling, as recognized by San Joaquin County’s Department of Health Care Services, may be substituted for 12 semester or 15 quarter units of specialized education. Additional qualifying experience may be substituted for education on a year-for year basis but may not be substituted for the 12 semester or 15 quarter units of specialized education. 

License: Possession of a valid California driver’s license if required by nature of assignment.


Methods and techniques of individual and group facilitation, physiological and sociological aspects of alcohol and drug abuse and dependency; substance abuse prevention methods and outreach techniques; youth development, needs, problems, attitudes, and behavior patterns of persons suffering from alcohol and drug addiction; basic principles of human behavior, basic principles of cultural development; community resources and agencies (i.e. public agencies, private enterprise, school districts, social services organizations, etc); and first aid/CPR.


Understand and follow oral and/or written instructions; establish and maintain effective working relationships with program participants, community agencies, co-workers, and the public; maintain routine records and write reports; communicate effectively, both orally and in writing; benefit from training; understand and accept differences in human behaviors and cultural backgrounds; effectively evaluate program participant needs.


Mobility-Occasional keyboard operation; frequent sitting for long periods; occasional walking, standing for long periods, pushing/pulling, bending/squatting, frequent driving; occasional climbing stairs; Lifting- Occasionally lifts up to 30 pounds; Visual-Frequent overall vision, reading/close up work; occasional color perception, hand eye coordination, peripheral field of vision; Dexterity-Occasional holding, reaching, grasping, repetitive motion; frequent writing; Hearing/Talking-Frequent hearing normal speech, telephone, talking in person; occasionally talks over public address; Emotional/Psychological-Occasional emergency situations, trauma, grief and death; concentration; frequent decision making, public contact, travel, occasionally works weekends and nights.

San Joaquin County complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and, upon request, will consider reasonable accommodations to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

CLASS: RS1024; EST: 12/12/2001;