Health Advocate in the Health Justice Program – Rutherfordton  

Pisgah Legal Services (PLS) is a community-based non-profit legal aid agency governed by a local Board of Directors. PLS has an annual budget of $6.5 million from a multitude of funding sources. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina (WNC), Pisgah Legal Services’ provides free civil legal assistance to low-income people in WNC. The organization currently has offices in Asheville, Hendersonville, Rutherfordton, Brevard, Burnsville, and Marshall. With a dedicated staff of seventy-six, including thirty-two attorneys plus supporting staff, and an active group of 300 volunteer attorneys, the program provides free services to more than 18,000 people per year to meet their basic needs, primarily in the poverty law areas of housing, public benefits, domestic violence prevention, health care, immigration, and consumer law.

The Health Advocate works at the grassroots level in Rutherford and Henderson and the surrounding areas to help improve health. The primary work of the position includes health insurance enrollment, health education, community engagement and coordination with health care providers to make the connection between health and poverty (social drivers of health).

The position is based in Rutherfordton with regular travel to Hendersonville to offer ACA health insurance enrollment appointments and build community connections.

• Commitment to Pisgah Legal Services’ mission, values and vision.
• Develop relationships with local community partners to engage in community education, outreach, health insurance enrollment assistance activities, and making referrals.
• Successfully complete and pass the certification to become a Certified Application Counselor provided by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
• Work with individuals in one-on-one appointments to support health insurance enrollment in the NC Marketplace or Medicaid.
• Build relationships with community organizations and leaders to promote Medical-Legal Partnership work, building the connection between health outcomes and legal services to alleviate poverty.
• Promote awareness of free legal aid, health insurance enrollment, and tax assistance available.
• Receive referrals for legal aid and complete applications for services. Enter data and work with other staff to determine next steps for applicants.
• Work collaboratively with Pisgah Legal’s Health Justice team members of staff and volunteers.
• Utilize web-based software programs to report health insurance enrollment outcomes and track consumer forms.
• Commit to continued learning about the connection between socio-economic factors and health.
• Passionately support the idea of access to quality healthcare for all people.
• Assist with program data entry and grant reporting.
• Provide all information and services in a manner that is culturally and linguistically appropriate and ensure accessibility for individuals with disabilities.
• Provide remote services through phone, Zoom, Microsoft Teams and other platforms until COVID-19 restrictions permit in-office work.
• Upon return to PLS offices, the Health Advocate will be based in Rutherfordton, work once a week in Hendersonville, as well as travel regularly to Asheville. An agency car or mileage reimbursement are available for work-related travel.

• Demonstrated skills at socio-economic and cultural sensitivity, commitment to equity
• Commitment to work collaboratively with all constituent groups, including staff, consumers, clients, board members, donors, community groups, member organizations and others
• Self-motivated, able to work independently
• Detail-oriented, accurate and organized
• Ability to understand, remember, and carry out complex instructions
• Excellent writing and verbal communication skills
• Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work well with teams
• Personal/professional roots in and strong network of connections in Rutherford County, a plus
• Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent experience in areas such as in social work, public health, public policy or a related field (degree not required)

Salary/ Benefits
Salary ranges from $30,690 – $47,672 depending on experience. Excellent fringe benefits, including 401(k) retirement plan, as well as life, health, and disability insurance.

To Apply
E-mail resumé and cover letter describing relevant experience to [email protected] PLS invites all applicants to include in their cover letter a statement about how your unique background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, cultural vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.

Pisgah Legal Services is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status