The Department of Youth Services (DYS) is seeking dynamic, positive, service and career-minded individuals to fill the role of Juvenile Justice Youth Development Specialist. Selected candidates will work with juvenile justice involved young people ages 12 – 20 years old (most of the youth served are 14 -18 years old) in DYS residential facilities. You will learn the fundamental principles of rehabilitation, safety and security in the juvenile justice system, and have a unique opportunity to utilize skills that directly and positively influence the course of a troubled young person’s life.
The Juvenile Justice Youth Development Specialist is the front line residential staff serving youth committed to the care or custody of the Department. The incumbent will work with youth to help them acquire the knowledge and life skills to become independent and responsible adults while maintaining the safety and security of the program. Juvenile Justice Youth Development Specialist serves as a positive role model and advocate who promotes Positive Youth Development and supports youth in the areas of education, treatment and rehabilitation.
For additional information about the Department of Youth Services and its programs please watch: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1gyP0kCJ181nBakh9Cc0pNNEyPw7kAoI6/view
Duties and Responsibilities (these duties are a general summary and not all inclusive):
- Collaborate as a part of a team to oversee, supervise, and provide advocacy, guidance, encouragement and support to the youth in their daily activities that include classrooms and afternoon leisure/sports, mealtime, hygiene, and clinical sessions.
- Serve as a role model to youth and assist them in developing coping skills and social and life skills while providing guidance and support through daily interactions in order to facilitate their re-entry into thecommunity.
- Monitor and maintain a clean, safe, and secure environment free of contraband by completing required program security measures including but not limited to supervision rounds, head counts, indoor and outdoor security checks and searches of youth and visitors.
- Observe the conduct and behavior of youth assigned to the program and take appropriate action as trained to prevent disturbances or self-harm and to ensure the safety of staff/ youth in compliance with established policies, regulations and procedures.
- Capacity to establish a rapport with youth and staff from different ethnic, cultural and/or socio-economic backgrounds.
- Ability to interact with people who are under physical and/or emotional stress.
- Capability to make decisions and act quickly in emergency and/or dangerous situations while remaining calm.
- Proficiency in gathering information by examining records and documents and through questioning and observation as well as exercising discretion in handling confidential information.
- Successful completion of a Physical Ability Test (PAT)
- Strong written and verbal communications skills.
- Flexibility to work varied shifts, weekends, holidays or nights.
- Ability to take direction and work under the supervision and direction of a senior staff member.
- Minimum Age Requirement: 21 years
- Applicants must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent.
- Must be able to perform the physical requirement of the job (i.e. Ability to properly restrain or subdue youth through appropriate use of handcuffs or other restraint techniques) if necessary.
- Able to talk and/or hear, stand and walk, run, kneel and climb stairs, as well as lift, carry, push, or pull up to 55 pounds with or without assistance and with or without the use of devices and/or equipment to assist in the lifting effort.
- Based on assignment, incumbents may be required to possess a current and valid motor vehicle driver’s license at a class level specific to assignment.
- Upon hire, incumbents must complete and maintain a valid certification in crisis intervention, suicide prevention, Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and first aid.
- Incumbents may be exposed to verbal and/or physical confrontations and potentially dangerous environments.
- Incumbents may be required to physically restrain youth.
- Incumbents typically work a standard 40-hour work week; however, may be required to work extended hours, nights, holidays or weekends.
- Incumbents may be required to travel in-state and based on assignment may be required to travel out of state.
As the Juvenile Justice agency for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Department of Youth Services promotes positive change in the youth in our care and custody. Our mission is to make communities safer by improving the life outcomes for youth in our care. We achieve our mission through investing in highly qualified staff and a service continuum that engages youth, families, and communities in strategies that support positive youth development. For more information please go to: https://www.mass.gov/orgs/department-of-youth-services.
Candidates must successfully complete pre-employment screening which includes:
- Drug/Steroid Screening
- Psychological Screening
- Medical Examination
- Physical Abilities Test (PAT)
If you would like more information, please log on to the DYS website
http://www.mass.gov/dys to access detailed information on the Pre-Employment process.
A criminal background check will be completed on the recommended candidate as required by the regulations set forth by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services prior to the candidate being hired. For more information, please visit http://www.mass.gov/hhs/cori and click on “Information for Job Applicants.”
Education, licensure and certifications will be verified in accordance with the Human Resources Division’s Hiring Guidelines
Education and license/certification information provided by the selected candidate(s) is subject to the Massachusetts Public Records Law and may be published on the Commonwealth’s website.
If you require assistance with the application/interview process and would like to request an ADA accommodation, please click on the link and complete the Reasonable Accommodation Online Request Form
For questions, please contact the Employment and Staffing, Office of Human Resources at 1-800-510-4122 and select option #2.
When you embark on a career with the Commonwealth, you are offered an outstanding suite of employee benefits that add to the overall value of your compensation package. We take pride in providing a work experience that supports you, your loved ones, and your future.