Equity-Informed Mediation: The Cohort Journey

I was part of RNW’s pilot cohort for Equity-Informed Mediation. In age, culture, and experience, the cohort was a diverse group - African-American, Kenyan, Native American and Latinx. We spent hours building community, engaging in the universal practices of empathy, and discussing how to be impartial to participants while being intolerant to injustice. In the beginning, we struggled to find the balance. Oregon’s standards and practices for mediation accommodate dominate culture. But how do we welcome cultural nuances of communication so all parties can bring their full selves and resolve conflict in a way that is meaningful to those outside the frame of dominate culture? In my first mediation, I saw clearly how cultural dynamics and structures of oppression play out in individual conflict. And I also saw how we as mediators can get in the way of people bringing their whole selves to the conversation. Two neighbors were encouraged to come to mediation by [...]

By |2019-01-31T20:26:47-08:00January 31st, 2019|neighborhood mediation|0 Comments

Walking the Mediation Talk

Every year Resolutions Northwest trains a new group of mediators. They complete 30 plus hours of training and then a handful go on to become volunteer mediators. They commit to volunteering three hours once a week for a year doing case development, mediation, and outreach. Throughout their service, the volunteers receive coaching from our mediation team, on-going skills development, as well as coached mock mediation sessions. This year there are eleven volunteers, and they have been navigating the world of mediation at Resolutions Northwest for nearly three months. I had the opportunity to sit with them during ‘overlap’ when they all meet between their volunteer shifts to talk about cases, lend support and advice if needed, or get some extra coaching from the RNW mediation team. The volunteer room is often full of laughter and playfulness and the group explained to me that it is because they look forward to [...]

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