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Substance Abuse Counselor Salary

As a substance abuse counselor you’ll work with patients and their families regarding substance abuse issues such as drug or alcohol abuse.  The counselor will provide counseling and also help to develop programs for treatment for the patient based on each patient’s problems. This type of profession will require state certification as well as a master’s degree and undergraduate degree. Here we will find out what the substance abuse counselor salary will be, where the substance abuse counselor can work and how the registered substance abuse counselor can increase their salary.

Substance Abuse Counselor Jobs

The substance abuse counselor can work in half-way houses, jails, prisons, social welfare agencies, drug and alcohol treatment centers, hospitals, homeless shelters and state and community departments.  The highest percentage of growth in drug and alcohol abuse is found in teenagers, requiring a need for substance counselors in schools and universities. A counselor can also work by teaching substance abuse awareness lectures and programs, traveling from school to school.  behavior addiction

An abuse counselor will be required to obtain a bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree. There are also certificate programs available in place of a master’s degree program that is one year in length. After you have earned your degrees you will need to take a state licensing exam, which will also require the substance abuse counselor to earn continuing education credits in order to renew their licensure.  The amount of continuing education hours for the counselor will vary from state to state but are typically 50 to 60 hours every three years at the time of the license renewal. A counselor can attend lectures, webinars, online study courses and at home study courses on the NAADAC website. Failure to provide proof of the required amount of continuing education hours can result in the loss or suspension of the registered substance abuse counselor’s license.

Salary Potential for the Substance Abuse Counselor

The salary for the substance abuse counselor will depend on their level of education, years of experience and their work environment. The substance abuse counselor salary will range from 32,000$ to 49,000$ a year, with the starting salary ranging from 28,000$ to 30,000$. For a higher paying salary potential a counselor can apply for a supervisory position once they have worked more than three years in the field which can increase their salary by 6,000$ to 8,000$.  Available positions such as live-in counselor or director of a halfway house can also offer a higher salary while working in a treatment center or homeless shelter will provide the lower registered substance counselor salary.  Working in a hospital or at an in-patient rehab can also provide a higher annual salary with supervisory positions available with field experience.



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