Community outreach workers, also called social service assistants, act as support staff for social workers and other professionals who help individuals and families experiencing various types of life difficulties. A community outreach worker helps clients obtain community-based benefits and services for problems such as substance abuse, financial problems and child care issues. Salaries for these workers vary with the type of employment.
An estimated 344,050 community outreach workers were employed in the United States in 2009, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their average pay rate was $14.37 per hour, equaling $29,880 per year. The bottom 10 percent were earning $8.80 per hour and less, and the middle 50 percent $10.69 to $17.12 per hour. The top 10 percent had wages of $21.52 per hour and higher, or at least $44,760 per year.
Types of Employment
The bureau provides salary information for community outreach workers in certain types of employment. Those holding jobs in residential facilities for individuals with mental health or substance abuse problems had an average hourly wage of $11.91 in 2009. Community outreach workers employed in vocational rehabilitation services were making $12.56 per hour, in individual and family services $13.62, in local government agencies $16.41, and in state government agencies $17.22 per hour.
Employment Per Capita
Minnesota had the largest number of community outreach workers per capita in 2009, with an estimated 18,750 working there. In Minnesota, community outreach workers were earning $13.84 per hour on average, or $28,780 per year. Alaska had the second-highest number per capita, and the pay rate there for outreach workers was $16.36 per hour. By metropolitan area, Duluth, Minnesota had the most outreach workers per capita in the country, and they had an average pay rate of about $14 per hour.
The average salary for community outreach workers in Alaska was the third-highest by state in the country in 2009, and Fairbanks, Alaska, was the second highest-paying metro area, with an average hourly pay for outreach workers of $21.96. The top-paying state was Connecticut, with an average pay rate of $19.92 per hour, and the top-paying metro area was Danbury, Connecticut, where the average was $25 per hour, equaling $52,000 per year. The second highest-paying state was California, with an average rate of $17.14 per hour for outreach workers.