Position Information

Position Information Message
Social Services Advocate - Fall River Trial Unit

The Public Defender Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services, the Massachusetts public defender agency, is seeking to fill a full-time Social Services Advocate (SSA) position for the Fall River Trial Unit. 


Social Services Advocates work as part of a multidisciplinary legal defense team to provide zealous advocacy to adult criminal defendants in order to achieve the best possible legal and life outcomes. As part of the defense team, the SSA will take direction on a case from the lead attorney and work collaboratively with investigators, support staff, retained experts, law students and other interns. As part of working with the attorney on the pending legal case, the SSA also helps to identify the social and clinical issues that preceded arrest and those that may result from court involvement. The SSA must adhere to the rules of confidentiality under the attorney-client relationship. SSAs work under the supervision of the Social Services Advocate Director and/or Regional Director, with administrative direction provided by the Attorney in Charge.


As an integral member of the team, the SSA’s role includes bio-psychosocial interviewing and assessment, social history investigation, forensic case management, advocacy for clients within court, carceral, mental health and social service systems, fostering family interactions and intervention, treatment and sentencing planning, report writing, testifying, and making direct connections between clients and programs. Social services intervention occurs at all stages of the court process, from the initial arraignment through resolution and post-conviction.


The clients we represent are diverse across every context imaginable and bring many unique cultural dimensions to the matters we address. This reality creates a critical need for CPCS staff to be culturally competent and able to work well with people of different races, ethnicities, genders and/or sexual orientation identities, abilities, and limited English proficiency, among other protected characteristics.

Position: Social Services Advocate - Fall River Trial Unit
Organization: Committee for Public Counsel Services
Location: Boston,  MA 
United States
Salary: $57,583 - $79,183, commensurate with years of experience
Posting Start Date: 11/2/2022
Date Posted: 11/1/2022


  • Bachelor’s degree in a social service field and one year of related experience, or an equivalent combination of skills, education, and experience;
  • Must have insured, reliable and available transportation, and a valid MA driver’s license; and,
  • Access to a personal computer with home internet access sufficient to work remotely. 

A Master’s Degree in Social Work, Psychology, or related field is strongly preferred.


  • Experience working with individuals and families of diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, educational, and economic backgrounds;
  • Knowledge of social, psychological, environmental, economic, legal, and medical factors that influence behavior;
  • Understanding of social structures and institutional barriers that cause disparities, such as systemic racism and poverty;
  • Culturally appropriate skills in client interviewing, assessment, case management, and treatment planning;
  • Knowledge of public and private social services systems and resources;
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively and persuasively orally and in writing;
  • Proven ability to work effectively independently and as part of a team;
  • Ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships within the office and the service provider community;
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple clients and responsibilities;
  • Availability to work occasional evenings and weekends to meet with clients, bring clients to programs, attend meetings, conduct collateral interviews, and handle emergencies;
  • Knowledge of defense practice, the criminal legal system, and/or corrections is a plus; and,
  • Bilingual abilities are a plus.
Status: This listing expires on: 1/30/2023
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Organization Information
Committee for Public Counsel Services
75 Federal St.
6th Floor
Boston,  MA 02110
United States
Carrie Burke