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What is Mediation?

Mediation is a constructive conversation between people in conflict facilitated by a neutral third person, the Mediator. Mediation provides participants an opportunity to collaboratively design creative solutions to workplace conflict and repair professional relationships.  

Participants, not mediators control the outcome of mediation. Mediators simply help participants communicate their concerns and interests. Once people in conflict have an opportunity to listen and be heard, they often develop mutually agreeable resolutions. If not, they have the option of concluding mediation at any time.

  • Voluntary
    Mediation is most successful when participants are choosing to take part in the process. Both the decision to attend mediation and how to resolve the conflict is in the control of the parties.
  • Informal
    Mediation is more like a conversation than a court proceeding. Aside from confidentiality, there are no procedural formalities in mediation. Participants do not need to prepare evidence, develop arguments or hire representatives for mediation.
  • Confidential
    Mediation works best when participants communicate freely. With very few limited exceptions, everything said in mediation remains confidential. Regardless of the outcome, participants may not discuss the content of a mediation session with others.

Benefits of Mediation

Using mediation can help to resolve workplace conflict before it escalates. When used early, mediation allows for disputing parties to deal with conflicts head-on that may be having a harmful effect on themselves, their environment or their ability to work together. The process aims to increase understanding, and improve or repair relationships. Since mediation relies on the parties generating their own resolution, mediation tends to produce durable, satisfactory and tailored agreements.

To learn more about how the process is practiced at the Center, please read over the Center's Mediation Guidelines.

Anyone in city government including; employees, union and management are encouraged to contact the Center to learn more about the mediation process and how it could benefit their members or teams. 

What is Mediation