According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors earned an average salary of $41,090 per year (or approximately $18.57 per hour), in 2013. The best-paid earned about $60,160, while the lowest-paid earned less than $25,200. The median annual wage for substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors was $38,520 in May 2012.
Substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors tend to earn less money than professions with other health care jobs. However, substance abuse and behavioral counselors earn a similar salary as mental health counselors, who made $43,700 in 2013.
Job Outlook for Substance Abuse Counselors
Employment of substance abuse and behavioral disorder counselors is projected to grow 31 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. Growth is expected as addiction and mental health counseling services are increasingly covered by insurance policies.