What is mediation? Mediation is a private, usually voluntary, discussion and consensual decision making process in which one or more impartial persons – the mediator(s) – assist people, organizations, and communities in conflict to work toward a variety of goals. Parties in the mediation process are encouraged to:
- improve communication, understanding and empathy; improve relationships;
- use mediation to minimize, avoid or enhance involvement in the legal/judicial system;
- work toward mutual understanding to resolve a problem or dispute;
- reach their own decisions; resolve underlying conflicts; prevent problems from recurring.
What is the role of the mediator(s)? The primary responsibility for any resolution of a dispute rests with the parties. Mediators never give opinions on the issues in dispute. Mediators work to:
- facilitate communication among the parties; help them explore mutual understanding;
- assist in defining and clarifying issues; maximize the exploration of alternatives;
- assist in exploring reconciliation and settlement.
What does Piedmont Mediation Center, Inc. look like? We are a 501(c)3 Nonprofit Corporation that serves multiple counties in the Piedmont of North Carolina. We mediate disputes for District Criminal Court, Juvenile Court, Schools, Community Issues, and Medicaid Appeals; we also vigorously train our community in mediation, conflict resolution, restorative justice, divorce education/child advocacy, and life-skills for youth. Our staff includes full-time mediator/managers, contracted district criminal court mediators, contracted juvenile mediators/trainers, contracted divorce education trainers, and trained volunteers.