Community Navigator

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Published 16 days ago

The Center for Court Innovation is a non-profit organization that works to create a more effective and humane justice system by performing original research and helping launch reforms by guiding justice innovators, nationally and internationally. The Center creates operating projects that have been documented to reduce the use of jail and prison, assist victims of crime, and strengthen communities. 

Launched in 1993, the award-winning Midtown Community Court is one of the country’s first problem-solving courts. It provides alternatives to fines and jail as a response to low-level crime. Seeking to reduce crime and incarceration and increase public trust in justice, the Midtown Community Court works with neighborhood stakeholders to improve Midtown Manhattan, and to serve the vibrant Midtown community, specifically those in need of services. The court responds creatively to low-level offending, seeking sentences that are restorative to the victim, defendant, and community. Further, the Midtown staff engages in ongoing community engagement to promote community wellness and to help connect people in need to voluntary services. 

Midtown Community Court seeks a Community Navigator for its newly launched initiative in Times Square, Community First. The Community Navigator will be tasked with engaging community members frequenting the Times Square area, building trusting relationships with those individuals, and facilitating linkages to social services and other opportunities in the community. The aim of Community First is to create an upstream diversion away arrest by building trusting and supportive relationships with people in need of services and ultimately linking those individuals to mental health services, housing support, substance use services, and other kinds of social services as needed. Community First is a partnership between Midtown Community Court, Breaking Ground, Fountain House, and Times Square Alliance. 

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:  

  • Perform community outreach in the Times Square and broader Midtown community; 
  • Identify and build relationships with individuals who are experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity, substance use disorders, mental health crises, or in need of other supportive services in the Times Square area;  
  • Work with a diverse population in a mutually respectful manner, using a strengths-based approach; 
  • Develop and maintain working knowledge of local resources for health and wellness as well as public benefits;
  • Develop and maintain relationships with local businesses that can provide additional support (e.g., employment opportunities, access to bathrooms, access to free food and supplies);
  • Provide clients with support and linkages to programs and opportunities in the community (e.g., benefits, job programs, health, housing, and treatment services); 
  • Travel with clients to appointments and/or crisis services;
  • Conduct phone and physical outreach to engage clients in their court appearances and mandates; 
  • Know how to properly administer, and train how to use, a Narcan Kit;
  • Adhere to policies and procedures of the Community First program and Midtown Community Court;
  • Accurately and efficiently document client interactions and assigned tasks; 
  • Communicate effectively, and in a timely manner, with Midtown staff to provide client updates;
  • Attend weekly supervision, trainings, and staff meetings, and keep supervisor informed of all work-related activities;
  • Participate in community engagement projects, meetings, and events, including during evenings and weekends, as needed;
  • Perform additional relevant tasks, as needed.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will have a high school diploma and at least 2 years of relevant experience. Certified Recovery Peer Advocate (CRPA) or Recovery Coach certificate a plus. Candidates must have experience working with a diverse population, including individuals with a history of substance abuse and/or mental illness, using a strengths-based and trauma-informed approach. Bilingual (English-Spanish) preferred. Additional qualifications include: 

  • Use lived experience and be comfortable serving as a role model of personal recovery to connect with clients and support them in their goals;
  • Individuals who are formerly incarcerated, live with a mental health diagnosis, have experienced housing insecurity, and/or have experience with substance use treatment and recovery are particularly invited to apply;
  • Able to walk 30 blocks or more on a regular basis;
  • Knowledge of community-based resources throughout New York City, especially Midtown Manhattan;
  • Knowledge of the principles and practices of harm reduction;
  • Ability to motivate clients in a courteous, empathic, and professional manner;
  • Commitment to working as part of a collaborative team to ensure coordination of care for participants;
  • Strong communication skills to convey information clearly, accurately, and completely;
  • Ability to maintain professional demeanor when handling difficult contacts;
  • Experience using Microsoft Office programs, particularly Microsoft Word and Microsoft Outlook (for regular e-mail correspondence);
  • Strong work ethic, particularly in a team setting;
  • Commitment to creating, promoting, and maintaining a respectful, inclusive, and anti-racist work environment.

Position Type: Full-time, temporary for one year with possibility of extension.

Compensation: Salary range starts at $40,000 and is commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits package including comprehensive health, dental and life insurance, four weeks paid vacation, paid sick time, TransitChek, Flexible Spending Account plans for health and dependent care, a 403(b) retirement plan and a 401(k) retirement plan with a generous employer match.

The Fund for the City of New York/Center for Court Innovation is an equal opportunity employer. The Center does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, national origin, age, military service eligibility, veteran status, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, or any other category protected by law. We strongly encourage and seek applications from women, people of color, members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities as well as individuals with prior contact with the criminal justice system.

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete an employment eligibility verification document form upon hire. Only applicants under consideration will be contacted. No phone calls please.

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The Center for Court Innovation is a non-profit organization that works to create a more effective and humane justice system by performing original research and helping launch reforms by guiding justice innovators, nationally and…

Details at a Glance

  • Time Commitment
    Full Time Schedule
  • Job Type
  • Professional Level
    Entry level


New York, NY 10019, US

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