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The 10 States With The Highest Mental Health Worker Salaries For 2019

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Rankings, Salaries - 1 month 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. New Jersey
  2. Nevada
  3. Michigan
  4. Minnesota
  5. Wyoming
  6. North Dakota
  7. North Carolina
  8. Iowa
  9. Idaho
  10. Virginia

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 2018 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 $61640, so our index value would be:

$61,640 * (100 / 135.9) = $45,356

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 New Jersey $64,913 $79,130 121.9
2 Nevada $58,606 $60,540 103.3
3 Michigan $56,247 $50,060 89.0
4 Minnesota $55,019 $55,460 100.8
5 Wyoming $54,095 $49,660 91.8
6 North Dakota $54,084 $53,760 99.4
7 North Carolina $53,535 $50,270 93.9
8 Iowa $52,285 $47,580 91.0
9 Idaho $51,813 $47,720 92.1
10 Virginia $51,250 $51,660 100.8
11 Washington $51,121 $53,780 105.2
12 Maine $50,541 $56,000 110.8
13 Delaware $50,000 $50,700 101.4
14 Connecticut $49,561 $63,290 127.7
15 Utah $49,279 $45,830 93.0
16 Illinois $49,196 $46,540 94.6
17 New Hampshire $48,811 $57,110 117.0
18 Mississippi $48,277 $41,470 85.9
19 Wisconsin $48,274 $46,730 96.8
20 Indiana $48,089 $43,040 89.5
21 Ohio $47,803 $44,840 93.8
22 New York $47,427 $62,130 131.0
23 New Mexico $46,901 $45,260 96.5
24 Arkansas $46,567 $40,560 87.1
25 Kansas $45,494 $40,900 89.9
26 California $45,356 $61,640 135.9
27 Colorado $45,260 $46,980 103.8
28 Nebraska $45,109 $41,320 91.6
29 Florida $44,862 $44,100 98.3
30 Texas $44,619 $40,470 90.7
31 Rhode Island $43,686 $52,730 120.7
32 Georgia $43,326 $39,600 91.4
33 Louisiana $43,206 $40,960 94.8
34 Missouri $43,008 $38,880 90.4
35 Maryland $42,852 $53,780 125.5
36 Oregon $42,716 $49,380 115.6
37 Tennessee $42,706 $38,180 89.4
38 Oklahoma $41,905 $37,380 89.2
39 Hawaii $40,458 $67,930 167.9
40 Alabama $40,241 $36,700 91.2
41 Arizona $40,193 $39,390 98.0
42 Kentucky $39,337 $35,600 90.5
43 South Dakota $38,891 $40,330 103.7
44 Pennsylvania $37,909 $38,440 101.4
45 Montana $37,648 $37,950 100.8
46 West Virginia $36,274 $33,880 93.4
47 South Carolina $35,614 $35,330 99.2
48 Alaska $35,408 $46,420 131.1
49 Vermont $35,194 $42,620 121.1
50 Massachusetts $32,436 $43,270 133.4
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