The Department of Workforce Development oversees all training and credentialing activities for Family Peer Advocates and Youth Peer Advocates. Technical assistance is available to agencies who currently provide or are interested in providing Family Peer support and/or Youth Peer support. Since New York State transitioned to Medicaid Managed Care, the FPA and YPA Credentials have taken on an increasingly important role in the service system. We are committed to expanding the family and youth peer advocate workforce across New York State. Over the past 3 years, we have seen much progress toward that goal. 

Families Together in NYS, Inc. has managed the Parent Empowerment Program (PEP) Training since 2009. The PEP training was revamped in 2018 and to date, # of advocates have completed this requirement for a FPA Credential. The Family Peer Advocate Credential launched in 2011 and currently there are over 400 FPAs credentialed statewide.

The Youth Power network of FTNYS has supported the training  and credentialing of Youth Peer Advocates (YPAs) in New York State since 2015. The YPA training was updated in 2018 and to date, over 100 advocates have completed this requirement  for the YPA Credential. The number of credentialed Youth Peer Advocates has surpassed 100 statewide!

Department News & Events

Family Peer Advocate Credential Renewal

Policy Change Announcement We are pleased to announce an important change in the Renewal requirements for the FPA Credential. Starting with credentials expiring July 1, 2021, advocates will need two hours of training in Cultural Humility/Bias Reduction in order to...

Parent Empowerment Program (PEP) Training

We are pleased to announce an upcoming Parent Empowerment Program (PEP) 4-Day Virtual Training for new Family Peer Advocates who are currently enrolled in the FPA Credential pathway. Eligible registrants must hold a current Provisional Credential. Level 2 Virtual...

Workforce Development Advisory Committee

Announcing an Exciting Volunteer Opportunity! Workforce Development Advisory Committee is Expanding its Membership If you are a credentialed Family Peer Advocate looking for an opportunity to support the development of the FPA workforce, we hope you read the letter...

Program Brochures & Advertisements

Department Staff Contacts

Susan Burger, Director of Workforce Development

Pronouns: She/Her
Email Susan:
Call Susan:  1 (516) 314-1143

Robert Lettieri, Youth Peer Services Training & Credentialing Manager

Pronouns: He/Him
Email Robert:
Call Robert:  1 (585) 866-9333

Joanna Ahlatis, Workforce Development Program Coordinator

Pronouns: She/Her
Email Joanna:
Call Joanna:  1 (518) 432-0333 ext. 18

Family Peer Support Brochure – English

Family Peer Support Brochure – Spanish

Become a Family Peer Advocate

Youth Peer Support Brochure

Become a Youth Peer Advocate