DEPARTMENT:   Independent Living

REPORTS TO:  IL Program Manager

STATUS:  Full-time; 40 hour/week, non-exempt hourly


Position summary:

IL Specialist will understand and model the Independent Living Philosophy. Specialist will work to reduce the time it takes for persons with disabilities to acquire state and federal disability programs for consumers. Specialist will work one-on-one with consumers (by phone and in person) to help them understand state and federal disability program guidelines. Specialist will identify individual needs and assess and make appropriate referrals. Specialist will enter all pertinent data into database and communicate with colleagues regarding need for additional involvement.  Increase access to state and federal disability programs for The IC consumers. The Specialist will develop and teach benefits classes/workshops.  The specialist will provide in-depth counseling about benefits and how work affects those benefits.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Baccalaureate Degree or equivalent experience
  • Certified Work Incentives Counselor (CWIC) certification or availability to obtain after hire
  • Experience and a desire to work with people with disabilities with the goal of empowering the consumer in order to promote independence
  • Extensive knowledge of state and federal disability programs
  • Excellent writing skills including the ability to write case summaries that are strategic, persuasive, and evidence based
  • Ability to travel within Colorado Springs and surrounding counties to meet with individuals, including accessing consumer homes, attend meetings, and present information, as needed.
  • Proficient with computer, including, Word, Excel, and Outlook
  • Ability to work as a team member and independently to complete work functions without immediate oversight
  • Demonstrates The IC’s core values of Inclusiveness, Flexibility, Person First, Accountability, and Integrity

Essential Functions/Areas of Accountability:

  1. Ensure the philosophy, mission and goals of the independent living program are maintained.
  2. Have a working knowledge of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and Fair Housing Act.
  3. Assist consumers by educating, modeling, and empowering.
  4. Provide individual advocacy services with consumers as requested.
  5. Meet with individuals, whether by phone, in person, or by email/web contact, in order to respond to consumer needs and requests for information. Work with individuals in partnership with other IL staff and community agencies to get those needs addressed.
  6. Conduct pre-screening for benefits related issues.
  7. Understand federal and state disability benefits programs and can communicate understanding to others.
  8. Assist consumers in all aspects of applying in state and/or federal applications.
  9. Provide assistance in gathering information which these agencies may require, as needed.
  10. Work with Outreach in outlying areas to educate and facilitate meetings with staff and consumers for optimal goal development.
  11. Advocate, educate, and promote community awareness on disability issues.
  12. Participate in and share information on issues or areas in need of systems advocacy.
  13. Complete all paperwork and documentation necessary to start a consumer service record or develop an ILP. In a timely manner, enter data into the database to meet State regulatory requirements. Follow up with individuals who ask for referrals to outside resources in order to ensure their needs are met.
  14. Develop and present classes/workshops on a range of topics related to benefits and the IC.
  15. Attend weekly staff meetings.
  16. Maintain confidentiality as outlined in the employee handbook and work within the confines of HIPAA regulations.
  17. Perform other related duties and responsibilities as deemed necessary for the position.
  18. Accept responsibility for personal and professional development and engage in and explore opportunities for position related training.

Skills and Abilities:

  • Personal experience with a disability and knowledge of the Independent living movement is desirable
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Read and interpret regulations regarding SSA disability program eligibility requirements, Medicaid eligibility and other public assistance programs
  • Excellent communication skills, including public speaking
  • Ability to write routine reports, assessments and related correspondence
  • The capacity to empower individuals with disabilities to advocate for themselves
  • Must be organized and able to juggle multiple priorities as well as deadlines

Physical/Environmental Requirements:

  • Office environment requires ongoing computer use and extended amount of time sitting and standing
  • Extended amount of reading documents on computer and in print.
  • Ability to travel within Colorado Springs and surrounding counties to meet with individuals, including accessing consumer homes, attend meetings, and present information.
  • Reasonable accommodations may be made to empower the qualified individual with a disability to perform the essential functions of this position.+

If you are qualified and wish to apply, please route your resume and salary expectations along with a cover letter addressing your alignment with the minimum qualifications to  Responses must be received by Monday, April 23,  2018.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY:  The Independence Center adheres to a policy of equal opportunity and non-discrimination, as explained in its employee handbook, to all eligible participants regardless of age, sex, color, ethnic origin, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation, marital status, parental status, or disability.  Reasonable accommodations maybe made to empower the most qualified candidate with a disability to perform the essential functions of this position.