Summary of Roles: Parties and Mediator

Pre-mediation
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Be responsive and make your availability a priority
  • Sign a copy of the Agreement to Mediate
  • Prepare for the mediation:
    • Think about the key issues
    • Prepare opening remarks
    • Reflect on your interests and needs
    • Identify possible solutions
    • Think about your alternatives
    • Think about the other party’s perspective, interests and alternatives
  • In the case of a group complaint, the group constituents have to provide the following information:
    • the authorized spokesperson
    • a list of persons that the spokesperson represents along with evidence of the authorization to represent
    • any incorporation documents and a description of the group, including any incorporation documents
    • a description of the group, including but not limited to, its members’ interests in the complaint and specific geographical locations of the residences of its members
  • Explain mediation and answer any questions
  • Clarify and confirm issues
  • Be impartial
  • Establish the ground rules for mediation
  • Keep information confidential
  • Share basic information about the mediation process with parties, such as the Mediation Resource Tool, in order to allow parties to familiarize themselves with the process, understand what will be expected of them and prepare questions ahead of the telephone interview
  • Request input from parties as to the location of the mediation session, who will participate in the mediation and parties’ availabilities over the next 30 days
  • Meet with the parties separately by phone, prior to mediation
  • Ensure that the Agreement to Mediate is signed by all participants
Mediation session: Introduction
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Agree to the ground rules
  • Be curious and ask questions
  • Confirm authority to settle
  • Participate in good faith
  • Set the tone and review ground rules
  • Encourage parties to consider each other’s perspective on the dispute
  • Guide parties in exploring their respective interests and needs
  • Review the Agreement to Mediate and outline key parameters, such as confidentiality, voluntary participation and impartiality
  • Facilitate communication and keep parties focused
  • Verify authority to settle
  • Help parties focus on the future, rather than the past, and on interests, rather than on positions.
  • Continually assess whether it is appropriate to continue the mediation process and consider termination if necessary
Mediation session: Identify issues and set agenda
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Prepare opening remarks:
    • Communicate your perspective on the facts and the issues in an open, respectful and honest manner
    • Identify issues for discussion
    • Identify your objectives
  • Actively listen to the other party:
    • Try to understand the other party’s perspective
  • Ask clarifying questions
  • Listen to the parties
  • Invite parties to identify and prioritize the issues to be addressed
  • Ask clarifying questions
  • Capture and frame the issues in a neutral way
Mediation session: Explore issues and interests
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Share information
  • Seek to understand the needs and interests expressed by the other party
  • Generate options for the resolution of the dispute
  • Understand that the primary responsibility for resolving the issues rests with the parties and not with the mediator
  • Articulate what is important to you
  • Generate complete information
  • Assist parties shifting from position- to interest-based negotiation
  • Assist the parties in their development of viable options for resolving the dispute and assessing the various options in light of objective criteria
  • Focus on problem solving and ensure parties are aware and understand the issues and possible reasonable solutions
Mediation session: Generate and assess options
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Raise all possible options to solve the dispute – brainstorming
  • Assess “do-ability” and viability of the options
  • Capture possible solutions
  • Conduct a reality check – i.e. evaluate viability and feasibility of the options identified
  • In the event of an impasse, each party individually may be assisted in evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of their positions and provided with options to assist them to reach a satisfactory resolution of their dispute
Mediation session: Reach agreement
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Draft the Settlement Agreement
  • Visualize the short and long-term implications of the Settlement Agreement
  • Sign and date the Settlement Agreement
  • Concretize options (Who will do what? Where? When?)
  • Close the mediation session
Post-mediation
Your Role Mediator’s Role
  • Decide if you will file your Settlement Agreement as per subsection 36.1(7) of the Act
  • Decide whether outstanding issues will be referred to the Agency’s adjudication process or another dispute resolution process
  • Complete a survey to provide feedback about the mediation process. This feedback is considered by the Agency as it continuously improves its mediation services
  • Report the outcome of the mediation to the Agency
  • Maintain the confidentiality of the mediation process
  • Destroy all personal notes taken during the mediation process
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