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Forensic Social Worker (BSW), Minimum and Maximum Security Units, Forensic Psychiatric Hospital - BC Mental Health & Substance Use Services


Forensic Social Worker (BSW), Minimum and Maximum Security Units, Forensic Psychiatric Services
BC Mental Health & Substance Use Services

Coquitlam, BC

The Forensic Social Worker (FSW), Minimum and Medium Security Units works under the general direction of the Director, Shared Services and with the clinical support of the Professional Practice Leader, Social Work, as part of a multidisciplinary forensic psychiatric team to provide a defined range of forensic mental health social worker services to adults experiencing severe psychiatric and behavioral difficulties who have been referred by the Courts. The FSW carries out social work psychiatric/psychological assessments services to adults who have been referred by the Courts; prepares ongoing written assessment of progress and submits written reports to the B.C. Board of Review and/or Review Panel regarding recommendation for release; collaborates and consults with other professionals in the coordination and review of treatment; provides psychosocial intervention and treatment services for psychiatric patients who may be held under Order-in-Council; Mental Health Act certification, Court Order and/or Informal criteria; and provides information and support to services.

What you’ll do

  • Complete a full biopsychosocial social work assessment of adults experiencing severe psychiatric and behavioral difficulties who have been referred by the Courts by methods such as interviewing patients to identify their developmental history and their perception of level of social functioning and problems; interviewing family members and other community sources for collateral information reviewing referral information from Police, Court and other community agencies; preparing a written assessment that may be utilized in Court, submitting recommendations and information related to diagnosis, fitness to stand trial, mental state at a time of offence and treatment plans; identifying client needs, problem areas and formulating treatment goals; preparing ongoing written assessment of client progress and submitting written reports to the B.C. Board of Review and/or Review Panel regarding recommendation for release.
  • Collaborate and consult with other professional in the multi-disciplinary team in the coordination and review of patient treatment by methods such as participating in treatment conferences to determine team members responsibilities; monitoring treatment plans, re-evaluating and modifying treatment to meet changing needs of patients and/or his/her support system; providing systems perspective including family, social and community network to other team members; acting as a client advocate; planning client discharge and release to the community by arranging pre-placement visits, referrals to boarding homes, and community mental health support agencies; maintaining comprehensive documentation ensuring case reviews and tracking of client’s treatment progress; and providing information and support to families on an ongoing basis.
  • Provide psychosocial intervention and treatment services for psychiatric patients who may be held under Order-in-Council; Mental Health Act certification, Court Order and/or Informal criteria by methods such as functioning as Primary Counsellor for identified patients (psychotherapy and behavioural); carrying out evidence based individual, group and family therapies according to a variety of theoretical models; establishing and maintaining therapeutic relationships based on respect; providing supportive counselling to improve social functioning, self-esteem and independence for clients; providing group work treatment on alcohol and/or drug addiction and sex offender target groups; providing social skills and psycho-educational training; and providing psychosocial counselling.
  • Provide information, support and facilitate transition into FPSC by methods such as assessing client eligibility for income assistance and Legal Aid; retrieving patient belongings including arranging for property storage and rent payment; assisting the client and/or applying on behalf of clients for various needs, social insurance, birth certificate, handicapped benefits, Canada disability pension, Comfort Allowance; initiating Power of Attorney, guardianship and trusteeship for patients; and networking and interfacing with community support groups and agencies.
  • Maintain concise and accurate documentation of relevant information on client files in accordance with FPSC policy standards to meet regulatory requirements and provide evidence and rationale to support findings and treatment plan such as compiling pertinent background information.  Provides written reports and summaries as per FPSC policy, standards and guidelines. 

What you bring


  • Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from an accredited School of Social Work.
  • Two (2) years recent, related experience working in a mental health setting, or an equivalent combination of experience.
  • Effective September 1, 2013, full registration with the British Columbia College of Social Workers (BCCSW) is required.

Skills & Knowledge:

  • Broad knowledge of and experience in utilizing developmental theories, family dynamics, behaviour management modalities; providing direct treatment through individual, group and family therapies; and other treatment services for adult offenders and their care givers.
  • Broad knowledge of the service delivery system for adults at risk at the local, regional and provincial level.
  • Broad knowledge of social work theory and Forensic Psychiatric Social Work practice.
  • Broad knowledge of BCCSW professional practice standards.
  • Broad knowledge of other health care disciplines and their role in client care.
  • Broad knowledge of Bill C30 and the Provincial Court system.
  • Broad knowledge of psychopharmacology (indications and side-effects).
  • Awareness of and commitment to learning and understanding the Truth & Reconciliation Commission’s 94 Calls to Action (2015), In Plain Sight Report (2020), BC's Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (2019), and other related reports.
  • Commitment to upholding the shared responsibility of creating lasting and meaningful reconciliation in Canada as per TRC (2015) and BC's Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act (2019).
  • As a strong asset for consideration, we are looking for our successful candidate to have: Knowledge of social, economic, political and historical realities impacting indigenous communities and familiarity with Indigenous Cultural Safety and anti-racism and accompanying reports (BC DRIPA, TRC, etc.).

What we bring

Every PHSA employee enables the best possible patient care for our patients and their families. Whether you are providing direct care, conducting research, or making it possible for others to do their work, you impact the lives of British Columbians today and in the future. That’s why we’re focused on your care too – offering health, wellness, development programs to support you – at work and at home.

  • Join one of BC’s largest employers with province-wide programs, services and operations – offering vast opportunities for growth and development, and recognition programs that honour the commitment and contribution of all employees.
  • Access to professional development opportunities through our in-house training programs, including +2,000 courses, such as our San’yas Indigenous Cultural Safety Training course, or Core Linx for Leadership roles.
  • Enjoy a comprehensive benefits package, including municipal pension plan, and psychological health & safety programs and holistic wellness resources.
  • Annual statutory holidays (13) with generous vacation entitlement and accruement.
  • PHSA is a remote work friendly employer, welcoming flexible work options to support our people (eligibility may vary, depending on position).
  • Access to WorkPerks, a premium discount program offering a wide range of local and national discounts on electronics, entertainment, dining, travel, wellness, apparel, and more.

Job Type:
 Temporary, Full-Time (until July 16, 2024)

Wage: $39.92 to $49.86 per hour.
70 Colony Farm Road, Coquitlam, BC V3C 5X9.
Applications will be accepted until position is filled.
Hours of Work: 
Monday to Friday; 08:00-16:00.
Requisition # 

As per the current Public Health Order, full vaccination against COVID-19 is a condition of employment with PHSA as of October 26, 2021.

What we do

BC Mental Health & Substance Use Services (BCMHSUS) cares for people with complex mental health and substance use challenges.

BCMHSUS is part of the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA).

The Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) plans, manages and evaluates specialized health services with the BC health authorities to provide equitable and cost-effective health care for people throughout the province. Our values reflect our commitment to excellence and include: Respect people – Be compassionate – Dare to innovate – Cultivate partnerships – Serve with purpose.

Learn more about PHSA and our programs:

PHSA and BCMHSUS are committed to employment equity, encouraging all qualified individuals to apply. We recognize that our ability to provide the best care for our diverse patient populations relies on a rich diversity of skills, knowledge, background and experience, and value a safe, inclusive and welcoming environment.

Reconciliation is an ongoing process and a shared responsibility for all of us. The BC Governments’ unanimous passage of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act was a significant step forward in this journey—one that all health authorities are expected to support as we work in cooperation with Indigenous Peoples to establish a clear and sustainable path to lasting reconciliation. True reconciliation will take time and ongoing commitment to work with Indigenous Peoples as they move toward self-determination. Guiding these efforts Crown agencies must remain focused on creating opportunities that implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Mandate.


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