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These Are The 10 States With The Highest Mental Health Worker Salaries For 2017

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Rankings, Salaries - 8 months ago
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Without fail, in surveys across basically every demographic, the number one most important aspect of a job for most people is the salary — how much do mental health workers get paid where I live?

And while there are many things to go into how much you, specifically, can expect to make, there’s really good data for average salaries for mental health workers by state across America broken down by seniority level. So while your city may be slightly different than the state average, these averages give you a rough sense of what to expect for your salary.

To better understand how salaries change across America, we decided to take a look the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on average pay for mental health workers by state.

Additionally, we wanted to adjust the salary based on the cost of living in a state — because your salary goes further in North Carolina than it does in California.

The state with the best salary for mental health workers after this adjustment? That would be Mental Health And Substance Abuse Social Workers.

Here’s a quick snapshot of the top ten states for salaries:

  1. Wyoming
  2. New Jersey
  3. Georgia
  4. Illinois
  5. Nevada
  6. Michigan
  7. Delaware
  8. Maine
  9. Utah
  10. North Dakota

Let’s take a look at how we got here and a full ranking of all the states.

If you’re interested, you can read more about the job scene here:

How we determined pay by state

As we mentioned earlier, we took the average annual salary data for mental health workers from the 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics — specifically their ‘Occupational Employment Statistics.’

To make the comparison of salaries apples to apples across states, we also took into account the cost of living in each state.

We then created an index by dividing the average wage for a state by the cost of living relative to average. As an example, the cost of living index in California is 135.9 and the average pay is $64320, so our index value would be:

$64,320 * (100 / 135.9) = $47,328

We then ranked every state on this criteria with the state with the highest salary index ranking as highest average salary for mental health workers.

Here’s a look at the full ranking for all states.

Detailed List Of Mental Health Worker Salaries By State

Rank State Adjusted Salary Average Wage Cost Of Living
1 Wyoming $61,122 $56,110 91.8
2 New Jersey $58,736 $71,600 121.9
3 Georgia $57,713 $52,750 91.4
4 Illinois $56,279 $53,240 94.6
5 Nevada $55,624 $57,460 103.3
6 Michigan $55,528 $49,420 89.0
7 Delaware $53,698 $54,450 101.4
8 Maine $53,574 $59,360 110.8
9 Utah $50,688 $47,140 93.0
10 North Dakota $50,573 $50,270 99.4
11 Iowa $49,868 $45,380 91.0
12 North Carolina $49,510 $46,490 93.9
13 Washington $49,410 $51,980 105.2
14 Minnesota $48,918 $49,310 100.8
15 Virginia $48,859 $49,250 100.8
16 Wisconsin $47,747 $46,220 96.8
17 Connecticut $47,337 $60,450 127.7
18 California $47,328 $64,320 135.9
19 Texas $47,177 $42,790 90.7
20 Indiana $47,039 $42,100 89.5
21 Arkansas $46,475 $40,480 87.1
22 Kansas $45,661 $41,050 89.9
23 Florida $44,160 $43,410 98.3
24 Ohio $43,912 $41,190 93.8
25 New Hampshire $43,863 $51,320 117.0
26 New York $43,076 $56,430 131.0
27 Idaho $42,975 $39,580 92.1
28 Kentucky $42,132 $38,130 90.5
29 Colorado $41,888 $43,480 103.8
30 Alabama $41,754 $38,080 91.2
31 Mississippi $40,605 $34,880 85.9
32 Oregon $40,077 $46,330 115.6
33 Nebraska $39,978 $36,620 91.6
34 Tennessee $39,753 $35,540 89.4
35 Oklahoma $39,719 $35,430 89.2
36 Louisiana $39,314 $37,270 94.8
37 Rhode Island $39,287 $47,420 120.7
38 Missouri $39,280 $35,510 90.4
39 New Mexico $38,777 $37,420 96.5
40 Maryland $37,896 $47,560 125.5
41 Montana $37,410 $37,710 100.8
42 Pennsylvania $37,080 $37,600 101.4
43 South Dakota $35,660 $36,980 103.7
44 Arizona $35,265 $34,560 98.0
45 Alaska $35,125 $46,050 131.1
46 Hawaii $34,121 $57,290 167.9
47 Massachusetts $33,703 $44,960 133.4
48 Vermont $33,154 $40,150 121.1
49 West Virginia $33,104 $30,920 93.4
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