Peer Bridger Support Specialist


JOB TITLE:  Peer Bridger Support Specialist

DEPARTMENT:  Mental Health PEER Connection (MHPC)

LOCATION:  Buffalo, NY



Provides services to support individuals returning to care or entering care after an interaction with the hospital system. Provides onsite warm hand-offs between the hospital system and outpatient treatment providers and will act as a community-based content expert. Coordinates activities to form trust-based relationships that foster hope, build skills, and identify supports for successful community-based living.


  1. Initiate and maintain communication with individuals transitioning from Erie County Medical Center’s (ECMC’s) Emergency Department (ED) and Behavioral Health units referred for Peer Bridger Services.
  2. Meet individuals admitted to ECMC prior to discharge and inform them about recovery and share personal recovery story. Explain the role of a Peer Bridger and begin the process of building rapport.
  3. Provide Peer Counseling to individuals to assist in making informed decisions and self-direct services and supports.
  4. Assist in developing or build upon Independent living skills to support individuals to live in the community in a healthy manner.
  5. Assist referred individuals with completing post discharge service/treatment visits within seven (7) days of discharge.
  6. Assist referred individuals in identifying and working through identified barriers to attending appointments.
  7. Educate and assist individuals with developing Psychiatric Advance Directives (PADs).
  8. Work with individuals in developing Independent Living (IL) Plans, Person-Centered Plans and Wellness Recovery Action Plans (WRAP).
  9. Maintain accurate referral status information and electronic records in accordance with standards prescribed by Value Network.
  10. Accurately document services and required paperwork to Western New York Independent Living’s (WNYIL’s) Electronic Consumer Record (ECR) within two (2) working days of the date of service.
  11. Attend Agency training and staff meetings as well as any other agency related activities as required.
  12. Complete training on cultural competence, person-centered and family-centered, recovery-oriented, evidence-based and trauma-informed care, and primary care/behavioral health integration, risk assessment, and suicide prevention.
  13. Participate in maintaining a neat, clean and safe work environment.
  14. Perform other job-related duties as assigned by the supervisor.


  • Within the first six (6) months of employment, candidate must be a certified NYS Certified Peer Specialist OR Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPA).
  • Professional and life experience may be considered in lieu of, in full or part of academic credentials.

High school diploma or equivalency
Associate Degree in social work, rehabilitation counseling, psychology or related human services field.
Bachelor’s Degree in social work, rehabilitation counseling, psychology or related human services field.


  • High school diploma or equivalency requires four (4) years’ related work or volunteer experience with people with a behavioral health disability.
  • Associate degree requires two (2) years’ related work or volunteer experience with people with behavioral health disabilities.
  • Bachelor’s degree requires one (1) year of work or volunteer experience with people with mental illness.


  • Criminal background check will be conducted.
  • Be an individual who has self-identified as a person who has first-hand experience with emotional (mental health) behavioral challenges and / or co-occurring disorders.
  • Must be willing to share personal first-hand experiences with a behavioral health disability to provide peer counseling.
  • Must be willing to travel and meet eligible candidates in the community.
  • Must have intermediate level of knowledge of computers including the use of Excel spreadsheets, databases, word processing and networks.
  • Perform in a professional, conscientious, and efficient manner for the purpose of ensuring a better quality of life for persons with disabilities.


WORK ENVIRONMENT:  Office / Community

PHYSICAL DEMANDS OF THE JOB:  Sitting for extended periods of time.
Occasional lifting of not more than 15 pounds.

HOURS / SHIFTS:  37.5 – 40 hours per week. M – F 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Overtime rarely required.

CLASSIFICATION:  Full-time, salary, non-exempt, Professional staff.
Range:  $40,000 - $44,000

BENEFITS:  Agency provided group health insurance.
Vision, dental, life, supplemental insurances available.
PTO and paid holiday package.
403(b) retirement with Agency match.
Employee Assistance Program

OTHER:  WNY Independent Living values our employee safety and follows all recommended NYS required Infectious Disease Prevention Protocols.
Western New York Independent Living, Inc. is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Reasonable accommodations will be made for people with disabilities.
Western New York Independent Living, Inc. is a scent-free agency.


Closing Date:  January 11, 2023

Cover Letter and Resume Required to:

Tina Brown, CHRCO
WNY Independent Living, Inc,
3108 Main St.
Buffalo, N.Y. 14214