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City of Newton: Assistant Director of Social Services

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Job Title: Assistant Director of Social Services
Department: Health & Human Services
Grade: H9
Supervisor: Director of Social Services
Employment Type: Full-Time
Compensation: $72,058 – $74,220

Job Purpose: The mission of Health and Human Services Department is to protect, promote and sustain the health, harmony and wellbeing of all Newton residents, in a culturally-sensitive, customer-friendly manner.  The focus is on prevention.  The Department is organized into five different divisions: Environmental Health, School Health, Public Health and Education, Emergency Preparedness, and Social Services. This position supports the social services division under the direction of the Director of Social Services. The position is responsible for identifying community needs and developing proposals for responding to them, designing and implementing social service programs, consulting with city and external partners to provide a social work perspective when required, and providing direct support services to individual residents. This position facilitates the city effectively addressing social issues including (but not limited to): substance use disorder, housing, food security, workforce development, mental health issues, family related matters, domestic violence, and outreach and support for recent immigrants and non-English speaking populations.

Essential Function:

  • Assist Director in strategic analysis of the needs of residents and develops cost effective proposals for how to enhance social service delivery approaches
  • Assist Director in developing and implementing clear, responsive protocols to serve clients needs in a timely and effective manner
  • Provides division leadership in the absence of the Director
  • Research resources and social service best practices and support the Director in developing division materials
  • Develop and/or lead community workshops, programs and/ or groups on various social service related topics, including young adult, adolescent, mental health, and substance use disorder and others as need is identified.
  • Trains and consults with staff regarding psychosocial needs that encompass social, ethnic, religious and cultural diversity of individual residents of the City.
  • Identify areas of unmet community need and develop and implement creative strategies to address those needs, including programs, educational materials, social media outreach, regular media outreach and partnering with other departments and organizations.
  • Conduct community outreach through in person community- based networking. Provide staffing at community-based sites to engage with residents and inform them of services.
  • Facilitate, lead and/or participate in interdisciplinary service planning and case conferencing, including but not limited to; mental health providers, school social work staff, health care providers, and other city departments
  • Recruit, support and provide clinical supervision to interns or other staff as necessary.
  • Conduct on-site, in home, or in community visits with residents, family, or guardians to assess needs and facilitate access to services, through both pre-scheduled appointments as well as walk ins.
  • Maintain detailed knowledge of federal, state and local benefits and services. Keep abreast of developments in social services field, areas of expertise and trends.
  • Develop and maintain accurate and confidential client records including: intake notes, release of information forms, records, and statistics on contacts, referrals and resolutions, and any other records and reports as required.
  • Serve as a mandated reporter when there are concerns about neglect or abuse of children, elderly, or disabled.
  • Facilitate, present at and/or attend social service related meetings, conferences, on committees, task forces relevant to duties as determined with supervisor.
  • Participate in regular staff meetings, staff training programs, supervisory sessions, and accept the responsibility for aiding the development of positive team relationships as requested.
  • Maintains liaison with private, public, and other City agencies involved in the support of Newton residents. Convenes these groups when necessary
  • Lead, consult, and/or actively participate in Emergency responses to crisis situations including on-call situations requiring emergency response during non-business hours
  • Assist Director in budget planning and implementation relevant to social services
  • Assist Director in designing and implementing evaluations of social service programs
  • Adhere to and follow City of Newton, departmental/governmental rules, regulations, policies, and procedures. Driving to various locations
  • Performs other duties as required.


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education and Experience: Master’s Degree in Social Work from an Accredited MSW program. LCSW or LICSW eligibility.. Previous related training and/or work experience in a social services setting required. Previous experience with program development and coalition building highly preferred. Demonstrated organizational, time management and prioritization skills necessary. Management experience preferred. Fluency in languages in addition to English a plus.

Necessary Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Is a strong leader, prepared to identify new areas of support and develop programs, strategies and initiatives in response in coordination with the Director.
  • Possesses strong clinical judgment while working with a wide variety of residents presenting with diverse needs.
  • Has expertise in one or more issue areas: substance use disorder, mental health, domestic violence, housing, food security, outreach to recent immigrants and/or non-English speakers.
  • Is flexible and interested in learning new approaches.
  • Highly organized and detail oriented.
  • Superior interpersonal skills with outgoing style and willingness to creatively engage diverse constituents and develop strong working partnerships with a wide range of internal and external colleagues.
  • Demonstrates coalition building skills while working with multiple community agencies and stakeholders
  • Excellent communication skills.
  • Experienced at de-escalation and support techniques.
  • Able to work independently and as part of a team.

Physical Demands and Working Environment

COMPUTER SKILLS: Excellent computer skills including Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook. Experience using databases. Strong typing skills with attention to detail and the ability to conduct computer searches for resources, answers to questions, and fact-based information. The ability to develop educational and promotional materials.

LANGUAGE SKILLS: Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common scientific and technical journals, and legal documents.  Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints from clients, or regulatory agencies.  Ability to write/document information that conforms to prescribed style and format. Ability to present information effectively, which may be controversial in nature, to all levels including clients, groups of clients, families, top management, outside agencies, public groups or employees of the City. Additional language abilities in addition to English a plus.

MATHEMATICAL SKILLS: Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals. Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.

REASONING ABILITY: Ability to define problems and use judgement to work toward results, modify methods/techniques and make recommendations dealing with several abstract and concrete variables within clearly defined laws, precedents and policies.

CERTIFICATES, LICENSES, REGISTRATIONS: Minimum LCSW or LICSW eligible. In order to serve residents who cannot access city offices a valid Massachusetts Motor Vehicle operator’s license is required.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The physical demands described here represent those requirements that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The job may require one to carry materials, heavy at times, to support clients or programs. This may include (but is not limited to) food resources, school supplies, presentation tables and materials, audio visual materials, and documents.

WORK ENVIRONMENT: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Fast paced
  • Multi-tasking
  • Extensive interpersonal interaction
  • Variable
  • Some evenings and weekends required

Performance Standards:

Employees at all levels are expected to effectively work together to meet the needs of the community and the City through work behaviors demonstrating the City’s values. Employees are also expected to lead by example and demonstrate the highest level of ethics.


  • Deferred 457 Plans (Optional)
  • Dental Insurance
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Health Insurance
  • Metro Credit Union
  • Tuition Reimbursement
  • City Retirement (Mandatory)