Tentative Classification Standards issued by the Division of Classification & Compensation are shared with the operating agencies of State government for their consideration and comment. Accordingly, this document that you are viewing is subject to change and will be issued in final form at the completion of the review period.



Occ. Code  8125400












New York State Department of Civil Service


Classification Standard




Positions in this title series are responsible for the development, implementation, and evaluation of programs designed to provide services to inmates with special needs, such as visual, hearing, intellectual and/or developmental impairments, and those inmates with mental health issues.  Incumbents of these positions develop programs to provide services to special needs inmates; implement special needs programs; evaluate the effectiveness of the Departments special needs programs; and serve as special needs liaisons within the Department, with the Office of Mental Health, and with the Division of Parole.


These positions are only classified in the Department of Correctional Services (DOCS).  Incumbents of DOCS assist in the total care and confinement of inmates sentenced to the custody of the Department.  All incumbents perform various duties and functions in conjunction with the overall operation of a facility and/or location to which they are assigned.




            Correctional Facility Program Administrator is responsible for ensuring the efficient functioning of all programs, including Vocational Education, Guidance and Counseling, and Alcohol and Substance Abuse Treatment programs, within a correctional facility.




Levels in this series are ordinarily determined by the presence of factors that impact the degree of responsibility and the scope of the position.  The responsibility for intra/interagency coordination and program development is key in determining the level of Correctional Mental Health Service Provider.    


CORRECTIONAL MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAMS SPECIALIST: full performance level; develop, coordinate, implement, and evaluate special needs programming within the Department.


ASSISTANT DIRECTOR CORRECTIONAL MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAMS: Main Office position, responsible to the Director for Correctional Mental Health Programs, as acting liaison for interagency programming and to the Superintendents to ensure proper special needs programming.


DIRECTOR CORRECTIONAL MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAMS:  Main Office position, responsible to the Assistant Commissioner Correctional Mental Health Services for the overall direction of the programs of special needs programs at facilities of the Department and to represent the Department in regards to special needs programming.




Correctional Mental Health Programs Specialist


Develop programs to provide services to inmates with visual, hearing, intellectual disabilities, and mentally ill inmates.


-       Define and identify inmates with visual, hearing, intellectual disabilities and/or mental illness and formulate program offerings while working with Education, Guidance, and Substance Abuse staff.

-       Assess existing, and need for new, mental health and specialized programs; make recommendations in the development of programs.

-       Oversee discharge planning activities for inmates, working with the NYS Division of Parole, the Office of Mental Health, and other agencies as necessary.


Coordinate implementation of Departments programs for inmates with visual, hearing, intellectual disabilities and/or mental illness, as approved by the Assistant Director Correctional Mental Health Programs.


-       Develop budgets, equipment needs, physical plant requirements, and staffing needs for proper implementation of a special needs program.

-       Develop instruction manuals and policies for training of specialized program staff; conduct training and orientation session for facility program staff as necessary.

-       Oversee implementation of mental health program components, by staff at facility level, and make recommendations on facility level program implementation as necessary.


Evaluate the effectiveness of the Departments ICP (Intermediate Care Unit), SNU (Special Needs Unit), STP (Special Treatment Unit), BHU (Behavioral Health Unit), GTP (Group Therapy Program), RMHU (Regional Mental Health Unit) and sensorial disabled programs.


-       Collect and evaluate data relating to the effectiveness of program components for dissemination within and outside the Department.


Serve as the mental health special programs liaison between all mental health special programs within the Department.


Serve on behalf of the Assistant Director Correctional Mental Health Programs as needed.


Coordinate the Bureau of Mental Health, GTP, RMHU, Behavioral Health Unit/Special Treatment Programs; develop year-end reports on the Statewide and regional findings on the BHU/STP/GTP, RMHU programs.


Assist and coordinate the Bureau of Mental Health training programs.


-       Conduct routine site visits to monitor all mental health training.

-       Assist in the coordination of Office of Mental Health and Department of Corrections training programs.


Assistant Director Correctional Mental Health Programs


May perform all of the same duties and functions as a Correctional Mental Health Programs Specialist.


Serve as the Central Office Liaison between the Office of Mental Health, Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, the Division of Parole, and correctional facilities.


-       Participate in monthly meetings with agency representatives to ensure consistency of inter-agency policy.

-       Resolve inter-agency issues at each of the correctional facilities through quarterly visits.


Responsible for ensuring that correctional special needs programs adhere to correctional policy, with emphasis on admission and discharge.


-       Review and evaluate admissions and discharges based on special needs and adherence to correctional policy.

-       Assist in resolving program level issues pertaining to special needs programs.

-       Review existing policy to determine its relevance and effectiveness in meeting inmate needs; work with Program Planning and Evaluation Division to create measurement and evaluation instruments.

-       Prepare and submit detailed proposals to the Assistant Commissioner recommending and illustrating necessary policy modifications.


Work with Superintendents regarding special needs programs.


-       Interact with Superintendents on all issues regarding inmates with special needs.

-       Monitor and respond to inmate mental health issues

-       Recommend transfers for inmates to special needs programs or the Central New York Psychiatric Center.


Provide technical supervision to staff deployed in Intermediate Care Programs and other special programs to ensure adherence to correctional policy.


-       Assist in establishing program priorities to be adhered to by facility staff; monitor performance of staff to ensure effective and timely completion of workload.


Provide curriculum, technical assistance, and training to unit and facility staff relative to special programs.


Assist in the preparation of the budget for Mental Health and Special Programs, based on guidelines established by the Director for annual budget preparation.


-       Draft budget proposals for any new special needs programs.

-       Assist in preparing annual preliminary budget requests for Mental Health and Special Programs.


Meet with the Director Correctional Mental Health Programs on a daily basis to discuss activities and any major problems of the Bureau.


Director Correctional Mental Health Programs


Maintain responsibility for identification of mental health related and special needs of inmates within population and develop programs to meet these needs.


-       Coordinate the Extended Classification Program in order to ensure potential benefits to inmates derived from early identification of special needs.

-       Maintain responsibility for continued research involving mental health related needs throughout an inmates confinement.

-       Identify existing trends and develop projections on types of care required by inmates, including the sensorial disabled; analyze existing mental health related and special services available to inmates.


Responsible for the implementation of mental health based programming within DOCS.


-       Develop specific manuals identifying goals and methods for achieving those goals; identify program requirements; e.g. funding and staffing; and develop appropriate budgetary material to allow for necessary funding.

-       Represent the Department before New York State Division of the Budget in justifying program funding levels with authority to enter into necessary negotiations.

-       Collaborate with support divisions within Central Office for program implementation.

-       Act as agency representative in developing cooperative and contractual arrangements for interagency programs.

-       Develop, direct, and may personally participate in major training activities for program specific and other staff, as necessary.

-       Develop methods for adjusting and monitoring program activities, including computer based data gathering systems.

-       Direct and implement program modifications in order to increase overall program effectiveness.


Develop liaisons with major mental health service providers to elicit their assistance in joint projects and upgrading mental health services within the agency; develop and negotiate for programs based on shared services, technical assistances, and mutually beneficial training with organizations and groups.


Develop referral mechanisms for special care needs of inmates upon release from custody.


-       Develop a system for red-flagging inmates who will require special care or treatment when discharged.

-       Ensure that appropriate agencies are notified of release of inmates with special needs.

-       Arrange with community based organizations for continued therapeutic counseling or treatment upon release.




Correctional Mental Health Programs Specialist


Open Competitive:  a Bachelors Degree in Psychology, Sociology, Health Care Administration, Education, or a Human Services AND three years of progressively responsible experience in a program designed to provide services to Special Needs Clients.  Special Needs Clients include the following categories: the developmentally disabled, the mentally retarded and mentally ill, the blind, the deaf, the elderly, and the physically handicapped; or a Masters Degree in Psychology, Sociology, Health Care Administration, Education, Human Services, Counseling, or Public Administration, and two years of experience as above.


Assistant Director Correctional Mental Health Programs


Open Competitive:   a Masters Degree in Social Work, Psychology, or Criminal Justice and three years experience involving the design, analysis, implementation, evaluation, or management of specialized programs for confined felons with special needs including psychological, mental, emotional, or intellectual disability, or sensory impairment.


Director Correctional Mental Health Programs


Promotion:  one year of permanent competitive service as an Assistant Director Correctional Mental Health Programs.


Open Competitive:  a Ph.D. in Social or Clinical Psychology and three years of high level administrative experience in Clinical or Social Psychology; or a Masters Degree in the Psychological or Behavioral Sciences and three years of high level administrative experience in Clinical or Social Psychology.


Revised:  8/10


NOTE: Classification Standards illustrate the nature, extent and scope of duties and responsibilities of the classes they describe.  Standards cannot and do not include all of the work that might be appropriately performed by a class.  The minimum qualifications above are those which were required for appointment at the time the Classification Standard was written.  Please contact the Division of Staffing Services for current information on minimum qualification requirements for appointment or examination.