Council of State Governments
  • 26-Nov-2018 to 25-Dec-2018 (EST)
  • Justice Center, Behavioral Health
  • New York, NY, USA
  • Salary
  • Full Time

Medical, Dental, Vision, Short & Long Term Disability, Life, Paid Holidays, Paid Personal Time, Paid Sick Time, Paid Parental Leave

The Council of State Governments Justice Center (CSG Justice Center) is a national nonprofit organization that provides practical, nonpartisan advice and consensus-driven strategies, informed by available evidence, to increase public safety and strengthen communities. In general, the CSG Justice Center works closely with legislative leaders, judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, victim advocates, and others to develop consensus on various, often highly politicized, criminal justice issues and to translate this consensus into comprehensive reports, policy briefs, state and federal legislation, model policies, and innovative programs. The CSG Justice Center not only develops written and web-based materials, but also provides on-the-ground technical assistance to cross-systems policymakers and practitioners from multiple systems (corrections, mental health, housing, etc.), in state and local jurisdictions. 


Working as part of the Justice Center's Behavioral Health Division and reporting directly to the Deputy Division Director for the Stepping Up Initiative, the Senior Policy Analyst will be responsible for designing and implementing a broad-based technical assistance strategy for a national network of states and local jurisdictions that are working to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses and co-occurring substance use disorders in jails, under the Stepping Up Initiative. As part of this work, the incumbent will coordinate and draft toolkits and informational resources, conduct and assist with data analyses, facilitate distance-learning and peer-to-peer knowledge exchange, and respond to identified technical assistance needs. In addition, the incumbent will be responsible for providing other analytic support to the Behavioral Health division including technical assistance to grantee sites; occasionally conducting on-site technical assistance or data collection in state and local jurisdictions; and coordinating and participating in politically sensitive meetings with high-ranking local, state, and federal officials, advocates, and other experts across the country.


Specific responsibilities of the Senior Policy Analyst include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Lead the design and coordinate the delivery of broad-based technical assistance to a national network of counties and states working to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses and co-occurring substance use disorders in jails, as part of the Stepping Up Initiative;
  • Lead efforts to conceptualize the creation of technical assistance tools and products, including explanatory guides, planning tools and worksheets, data dashboards, analytic tools, and more;
  • Develop written products to inform policy including policy briefs, research memos, and presentations that concisely and clearly describe complex analyses and policy options to policymakers;
  • Plan and participate in policy-focused meetings of high-ranking government officials, advocates, and national experts;
  • Coordinate and collaborate with external partners, consultants, and subject matter experts to develop informational resources and deliver technical assistance;
  • Provide technical assistance to Justice and Mental Health Collaboration (JMHCP) grantees including leading phone calls with grantees, completing site visits and preparation of reports;
  • Develop/expand the knowledge base on criminal justice, mental health and behavioral health policy issues;
  • Identify themes and linkages across disparate initiatives within the CSG Justice Center's diverse portfolio, and leveraging opportunities to incubate and test new ideas and approaches;
  • Update senior staff and provide recommendations and advisement to inform long-range strategies;
  • Monitor timelines, budgets, and deliverables to ensure that responsibilities to funders are met in assigned project areas;
  • Research new funding opportunities, write grant proposals, draft reports to funders, and serve as a resource to funding agencies;
  • Identify and engage new contacts in the field to serve as formal or informal project consultants or partners;
  • Ensure that senior staff and, where applicable, CSG Justice Center colleagues, consultants, or funders are aware of relevant project developments and that other work in the field is leveraged for the advancement of project goals;
  • Participate actively in, and occasionally lead, staff discussions and strategic planning meetings;
  • Contribute to the development of CSG Justice Center website content and strategize with staff and technical consultants on ways of using the web to promote policy goals.


  • Excellent research, writing, and editing skills and an analytical mind;
  • Experience with performance measurement, research/evaluation, and data analysis;
  • Demonstrated knowledge of behavioral health policy, criminal justice policy, housing and homelessness policy;
  • Demonstrated success working in the policy arena in policy formulation, analysis, advocacy, research or the like;
  • Demonstrated success managing relationships with funders and/or external partners;
  • Strong oral communication skills, including the ability to effectively distill and present complex information in a concise, accessible way;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including maturity, an ability to work independently and in a team setting, and a sense of humor;
  • Efficient, organized work style, and an ability to prioritize quickly and confidently and manage multiple deadlines; and
  • Willingness to travel, occasionally several times per month.


At least six years (preferably more) of policy design, analysis, and/or implementation experience in the fields of behavioral health, criminal justice, and/or housing/homelessness.


A college degree (required) and a graduate degree in a related field, such as law, criminal justice, or public policy (preferred).


  • Frequently communicates with internal and external coworkers and customers;
  • Frequently views the computer to create policy briefs, memos, and presentations;
  • Frequently remains in a sitting position to perform desk duties;
  • Frequently uses the computer with fingers and hands;
  • Frequently works in a well-lit, tempered room;
  • Occasionally walks throughout office to communicate to coworkers;
  • Seldom lifts objects, such as files or paper boxes, with weight up to 25 pounds.


Interested individuals should upload the following elements (in pdf format) with their application:

  • Cover letter
  • Resume
  • One or two writing samples (preferable no more than three pages)
  • Names and contact information for references (at least three)

Incomplete applications will not be considered.

CSG is an Equal Opportunity Employer (Minorities/Females/Veterans/Disabled)

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