Independent Living Advocate, Grade 5

FLSA Status: Non – Exempt

Reports to: Independent Living Coordinator (Cayuga County)

Job Summary:

Engage in activities with the purpose of providing education and technical assistance as well as deliver one-on-one support to individuals with disabilities. Conduct and coordinate activities in the community that will improve the quality of life for and empower people with disabilities in Cayuga County to attain new skills and techniques so they are able to participate in daily living, recreational/social opportunities, and vocational/volunteering activities.

Essential Functions:

  • Provide information and referral services to the population of Cayuga County
  • Coordinate and provide Independent Livings Skills Training in group sessions or one-on-one as appropriate, according to participants’ set goals
  • Prepare teaching material for Independent Living Skills Training
  • Coordinate ARISE services with other community programs the person is involved with
  • Train, teach and provide support with: money management, nutrition, cooking, comparison shopping, emergency procedures, community awareness, mobility, laundry procedures, household management, health education, medical procedures, counseling and crisis intervention
  • Educate and empower people with disabilities to make well-informed decisions regarding options for housing, education, employment, etc.
  • Assist with identifying and accessing community-based supports, including but not limited to: affordable housing and housing subsidies, SNAP, HEAP, Section 8, employment supports
  • Collaborate with community stakeholders to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities
  • Attend ARISE sponsored and community events, public hearings and other public happenings at which representation of individuals with disabilities is important
  • Complete and maintain all required intake and participant service record documentation
  • Attend monthly staff and quarterly team meetings, and community meetings as directed by supervisor
  • Provide accurate and timely documentation of activities in ARISE’s database and paper files, and provide essential information for completion of agency reports to funders
  • Report on all activities and outcomes to the Independent Living Coordinator and Regional Director
  • Uphold the codes of conduct and ethics as well as all ARISE policies and procedures
  • Exercise sound judgment as a matter of course, and hold protected health information and other sensitive information in the strictest of confidence in accordance with ARISE and HIPAA policies
  • Other duties as assigned


  A. with 1 year of experience working with people with disabilities or in a disability-related field, will consider a combination of education and experience

  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work with a diverse population
  • Excellent communication skills, including public speaking and negotiation skills
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office
  • Excellent organization skills
  • Ability to compile progress reports
  • Self-starter with a passion for advocacy and disability rights
  • Clean driver license and reliable transportation for travel in Cayuga, Seneca and Onondaga Counties
  • Knowledge of ADA, and other disability laws a plus

Additional Qualifications:

Attention to detail; the ability to multi-task and work effectively in both a team and individual setting; flexibility and ability to manage a complex workload in varied work environments; willingness and ability to work some evenings and weekends; experience with database software; and strong knowledge of community based services.