Peer Specialists

What is Peer Support?

Peer Support is a system of giving and receiving help founded on key principles of respect, shared responsibility, and mutual agreement of what is helpful. Peer Support is not based on psychiatric models and diagnostic criteria. It is about understanding another’s situation empathetically through the shared experience of emotional and psychological pain. For more information visit SAMHSA (Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration).

What is a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS)?

A Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS) is defined as an individual who:

  • Self-identifies as a person who has direct personal experience living in recovery from mental health and/or substance use conditions,
  • Has a desire to use their experiences to help others with their recovery,
  • Is willing to publicly identify as a person living in recovery for the purpose of educating, role modeling, and providing hope to others about the reality of recovery, and
  • Has had the proper training and experience to work in a provider role.

More specifically, in Florida, the Certified Recovery Peer Specialist (CRPS) is a designation awarded to individuals who demonstrate competency in the field of peer-to-peer recovery support through the Florida Certification Board (FCB). Competency is gained through a combination of education and experience and earning a professional credential is a multi-step process. When applying to become a CRPS, applicants must attest to the type of lived experience that makes them eligible to serve as a peer to others. This attestation determines the endorsement(s) applied to an applicant’s CRPS credential.

The four (4) endorsements are:
CRPS-AAdult (A):Lived experience as an adult who has been in recovery for a minimum of 2 years from a substance use or mental health condition.
CRPS-F Family (F):Lived experience as a family member or caregiver to another individual who has or is in recovery from a substance use or mental health condition.
CRPS-VVeteran (V):Lived experience as a veteran of the armed forces who has been in recovery for a minimum of 2 years from a substance use or mental health condition.
CRPS-Y Youth (Y)Are between the ages of 18 and 29 at the time of application and have lived experience as a person who, between the ages of 14 and 25 experienced a significant life challenge and is now living a wellness and/or recovery-oriented lifestyle for at least two years.

Applicants can hold as many endorsements as they can attest to; however, only one endorsement can be selected at the time of application. Applicants seeking multiple endorsements will select a primary endorsement at the time of application and then coordinate their request for additional endorsements with their assigned certification specialist.

A peer is a person we identify with in some capacity. This can include from age and gender to sexual orientation to shared language. In behavioral health, a peer is usually used to refer to someone who shares the experience of living with a mental health disorder and/or substance use disorder.

Visit the Florida Certification Board’s website to learn how to become a CRPS and/or start the certification process today. Click the links below to learn more.

Created and developed by peers, the NCPS credential is an advanced credential that recognizes peers who have extensive experience and a large knowledge base that sets them apart. For more information on becoming a NCPS.

Certified professionals have completed the Florida Certification Board’s (FCB) certification process and have met the education, experience, and testing requirements necessary to provide safe and effective care to the public.

Peer Services have been billable in some states for many years, including Florida. Currently, services provided by peer specialists are billable through both the Department of Children & Families (DCF) and Medicaid. Covered services through DCF and Medicaid are ONLY billable for services provided by Certified Recovery Peer Specialists (CRPS).

Check out our FREE PSCFL Career Center for the latest employment opportunities posted by employers from all around the state. Job opportunities for Peer Specialists are on the rise in Florida, so be sure to check the CRPS Employment Database regularly for the latest job opportunities.

If there are no CRPS job openings in your area at this time, please feel free to upload your resume to our database for CRPS employers to access. Please note, resumes uploaded to our database will be visible to the general public; and although the intended purpose of uploading a resume is to allow employers access to these resumes for recruitment, we can not guarantee job placement.