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Harm Reduction Outreach Support Worker

Application Deadline: 
Posting Date: 
Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre

Harm Reduction Outreach Support Worker
Location: Owen Sound, Grey-Bruce Counties, Ontario
Status: Full Time
Posting Date: June 12, 2018

The Organization: Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre (SOAHAC) strives to provide quality, wholistic care by sharing and promoting traditional and western health practices to enable people to live in a more balanced state of well-being. SOAHAC provides services to Aboriginal people including those who live on and off reserve, status, non-status, Inuit and Métis within the Southwest region. SOAHAC has a mandate of ensuring that health services are accessible, of high quality and are culturally appropriate.

Role Summary: Reporting to the Integrated Care Manager, the Harm Reduction Outreach Support Worker will provide active outreach to Indigenous people who use opioids and other drugs in Owen Sound and our two neighboring First Nation communities. This position will promote harm reduction care within the community and First Nation and assist with building partnerships to improve access to harm reduction services. In addition, this position will connect with friends and family to raise awareness and increase understanding of harm reduction practices as well as offering public awareness to the community as whole through education initiatives. This is a full time position and will be situated to work in Owen Sound (in partnership with the Grey Bruce Health Unit), Neyaashiinigmiing (Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation) and Saugeen First Nation.


  • Completion of relevant post-secondary degree or diploma
  • Minimum one (1) year experience working within the harm reduction model of service delivery and connecting to individuals and communities at-risk
  • Demonstrated understanding and working knowledge of addictions and harm reduction principles as they relate to substance use
  • Knowledge of local Indigenous culture and local Indigenous communities in Southwestern Ontario
  • Knowledge of Indigenous-specific cultural, health and social services in Southwestern Ontario
  • Experience with both individual and systemic advocacy
  • Valid driver’s license and proof of insurance required, along with a driver’s abstract
  • A current, satisfactory/ acceptable Vulnerable Sector Screening (Police Check)
  • Basic First AID, CPR, Crisis Prevention Intervention

Required Skills:

  • Program development and implementation skills required (new program to SOAHAC)
  • Application of harm reduction principles (i.e. meet people where they are at, absence of judgment), comfort with working ‘on the street’ in both an urban and rural context
  • Provide harm reduction supplies, information and support to individuals at risk for overdose and /or those who are using opioids and other drugs (i.e. provide naloxone kits, education, needle exchange, safe smoking kits, and sexual health supplies).
  • Competency in crisis intervention/de-escalation skills, strategies and application and supportive counselling skills.
  • Ability to coordinate a network of services and work in collaboration with community partners to build resources for clients and bridge communication gaps between clients and service providers
  • Commitment to both traditional and western/mainstream health and wellness methods
  • Committed to assisting clients with referrals to community agencies /resources and building bridges to critical services for clients at risk of overdose.
  • Travel to and from Owen Sound, Neyaashiinigmiing (Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation) and Saugeen First Nation and potentially other areas with identified needs.
  • Ability to work well ‘on the street’ , to locate individuals throughout urban and rural areas, comfortable with working independently as well as within a team environment
  • Effective time management & organizational skills
  • Effective public speaking and education skills
  • Excellent interpersonal, problem solving skills
  • Strong written and oral communication skills

This job may require additional responsibilities and duties as assigned by Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre and/or Grey Bruce Public Health.

Please Note: This position is based on annual funding and is full-time @ 35 hours (5 days) per week. Salary is competitive and subject to experience and funding. Comprehensive benefit and pension package included.

SOAHAC values diversity and is an equal opportunity employer; however hiring preference will be given to qualified Indigenous applicants. SOAHAC is committed to providing employment accommodation in accordance with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. If you require accommodation to apply or if selected to participate in an assessment process, please advise Human Resources.

How to Apply

If you are interested in applying for this position, please forward your cover letter, resume, and names and contact information of 3 references (two references from a supervisor or manager) to:

Attention: Anna-Marie Evans
Human Resources Manager
Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre
425 – 427 William Street,
London, ON N6B 3E1

Closing Date: June 26, 2018 by 4:00 p.m.

Please visit Southwest Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre online at: or like us on to learn more about us!