Jennifer Mackey has spent most of her life helping others, in one way or another. After receiving her undergraduate and graduate coursework in criminal justice, she began a career in law enforcement.
While serving as a police officer, she witnessed the prevalent correlation between criminal behavior and addiction. With her desire to help others, as well as witnessing the need for change, she went back to college and obtained her license in addictions counseling. She now has over seven years of experience in both inpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment and is also a certified counselor for SB123, a drug treatment alternative to prison in Kansas.
In 2014, Jennifer saw the need to better assist her substance abuse patients, who often had co-occurring mental health disorders. She wanted to address both the substance abuse and mental health disorders that often precede their substance abuse. She has since obtained her master’s in social work and is a Licensed Master Social Worker treating her patient’s substance use disorder, as well as assisting them in the issues that often surround the drug use.
Jennifer’s passion is the juvenile population. After working in the child welfare system, she often saw how youth fell through the cracks of our school, legal and foster care system. She is a certified educational advocate in the state of Kansas and has experience working with the court and school system in aiding youth that do not have a parent to assist them in making their best educational decisions.
Jennifer holds a certification in mediation services and has experience working with juveniles in the legal system. She helps youth offenders meet their victim face to face and by opening the dialogue between the offender and victim she is able to help the youth understand and feel the impact of their behaviors. The hopeful outcome is that it will deter their future interactions with the legal system.
Jennifer’s specialties include working with the adolescent population and their families, particularly those from more socioeconomically challenging environments. Additionally, Jennifer specializes in clients with an extensive legal or violent criminal background.