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Proposal Details

Proposal ID112
ProposalDispute Resolution Committee Operating Rules and Procedures
PresenterDispute Resolution Committee, co chairs Maya O'Connor and Mark Kamleiter
Floor ManagerJody Grage
Discussion10/18/2004 - 11/07/2004
Voting11/08/2004 - 11/15/2004
Presens Quorum30 0.6666
Consens Quorum36 A Majority of Yes and No Votes


The DRC respectfully submits these drafts of Bylaws and Policies
and Procedures, which have been developed and approved by the DRC through
consensus process. We have primarily prepared these documents to provide
the basis for mediation.

Relative to arbitration or ethics hearings, the committee has not yet
worked on such structures in these documents. The committee feels that
mediation services should be the first priority of the DRC and in most
circumstances mediation should be the first step of dispute resolution. In
addition, it was not clear to the committee whether it was the will or
mandate of the CC to develop arbitration or ethics structures, these being
quasi-judicial in nature. It is recommended that if the CC should desire
the DRC to develop such procedures, that the CC adopt such amendments to
USGP bylaws or policies and procedures necessary to authorize such authority
in the DRC. The DRC is able and willing to advise the CC as to the
potential nature and function of such structures.



The primary mission of the Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) is to develop
and implement an appropriate structure, policies, rules and procedures for
the provision of mediation and arbitration services to the Green Party of
the United States (Hereinafter, Party). This committee will offer trained
mediators to facilitate the resolution of disputes and disagreements between
individuals and groups involved in conducting the business of the Party.
Where necessary the committee will provide binding arbitration panels
empowered to make findings of fact and to make determinations and
interpretations of the rules and procedures of the Party. This is done by
focusing on the following areas:

1) The development of structure, rules, policies and procedures for the
mediation of disputes and disagreements;

2) Train and make available mediators for the facilitation of dispute

3) Promote and educate the Green Party relative to mediation and the
services of the DRC.

4) The development of structure, rules, policies and procedures for the
binding arbitration of disputes and disagreements;

5) Train and make available panels of arbiters for hearing referred matters
of disputes involving the rules, policies and governance of the Party;

6) Maintain a strict confidentiality relative to all aspects of any
mediation undertaken.

7) Maintaining archives of decisions, and rule or policy construction and


Eligible Members: The Committee shall consist of Green Party members from
the various state parties who either have been approved by their state
parties or are currently serving as delegates to the GPUS Coordinating
Committee. Members may be admitted as provisory members, during the pendency
of their good faith efforts to obtain home state party approval. Such
provisory members shall function with the same authority and membership
status as approved members. Members are given 90 days to obtain home state
approval. If such approval is not obtained within that time frame, then the
member must request an extension, with an explanation as to why the
extension is necessary. In the event that a provisory member is denied
state approval for service on the DRC, then the DRC shall offer its
mediation and dispute resolution services to help said member to resolve any
issues that may have blocked the approval. While it is understood that
obtaining home state approval may in some cases take some time, it is
important that DRC members ultimately obtain such approval.

In accepting DRC membership, all members commit themselves to
respecting the confidentiality of all matters brought before the DRC. The
extent and nature of this confidentiality shall be defined by the Policies
and Procedures of the DRC as approved by the Steering Committee and the
Coordinating Council of the USGP.

Committee Administration: The Committee shall be made up of Administrative
Committee Members. This Administrative Members are responsible for the
development of the Committees structures, policies, rules and procedures.
These members are further responsible for the conduct of Committee business
and the administration of the committees responsibilities. In their
capacity and function in the Committee Administration, these members are
voting DRC members. These individuals might also have responsibilities as
mediators and arbiters, but such responsibilities are not required for
Committee Administration membership.

Mediators and arbiters: The Committee shall also maintain panels of trained
mediators and arbiters, who shall be responsible for carrying out the
mediation and arbitration responsibilities of the Committee. These
mediators and arbiters shall function according to the structures, policies,
rules and procedures as developed by the DRC. For the purposes of carrying
out their responsibilities these mediators and arbiters are considered
non-voting members of the DRC. Some Mediators and Arbiters might also be
members of the Committee Administration and in that capacity they would also
be voting DRC members.

Co-Chairs: There shall be two (2) co-chairs, preferably reflecting gender
balance or other diversity. The co-chairs shall be elected with staggered
terms of two years each. Members may nominate themselves. If more than two
candidates are nominated, the committee shall vote using IRV, with a 2/3s
vote of all committee members . Elections for the co-chairs shall be held
within four weeks after the Coordinating Committee approval of these Bylaws.
Until these elections, the present elected co-chairs will serve as temporary
chairs. Vacancies shall cause a vote for a replacement co-chair. A recall
election of a chair may be called by any member, following the same
procedure as used for any proposal. Such recall election shall require a
2/3s vote of all committee members for the recall of a co-chair, before
such co-chair shall be recalled.

Co-Chair Responsibilities: The responsibilities of the co-chairs shall
include keeping the committee on task, maintaining a current roster of
committee members, conducting votes, and communicating with CC and SC
members for the DRC committee and its subcommittees. Co-chairs shall submit
formal monthly reports to the CC list detailing committee activities. To the
extent necessary, the Co-chairs shall represent the DRC to the USGP-CC and
to the USGP-SC. The co-chairs shall come to explicit agreement and
continue to consult with each other about how their joint responsibility is
to be shared.

Secretary: The DRC may chose to elect a secretary. This position would be
optional and may depend upon the availability of the appropriate individual
satisfactory to the DRC. The Secretary shall be responsible for maintenance
of committee membership rolls, polling members when votes are necessary.

Working Groups and Subcommittees: The committee may create working groups
and subcommittees. In the same way, the committee may dissolve such working
groups and subcommittees.

Inactive Committee Members: Members who have not participated on-line, in
subcommittees, or on teleconferences in the last three months shall be
considered inactive members and shall not be counted toward a quorum. An
updated roster shall be sent to the e-mail list at least every three months.


The committee shall develop a document, which shall be called Policies and
Procedures. This document shall provided the detailed policies and
procedures the Dispute Resolution Committee will use to carry out its
functions of Mediation and Arbitration. This document shall be drafted and
approved by the full DRC, including voting and normally non-voting members.
The voting shall be according to the procedures provided below. Once
approved by the full DRC the Policies and Procedures will be forwarded to
the Coordinating Council of the USGP. All changes and amendments will go
through the same process.



DRC shall maintain an e-mail list for all committee business and formal
Before a proposal is forwarded to the Coordinating Committee, it shall first
be sent to all DRC members, via the list, for formal approval. DRC members
shall attempt to reach consensus on all proposals.

When a proposal is sent to the DRC list, there shall be a two-week
discussion period. If consensus is not reached within two weeks, the group
may decide to add more time to the discussion period or to go to a five-day
voting period. The co-chairs shall conduct and verify the voting. Two-thirds
or more of all active DRC Administrative Committee members must vote in
favor for a decision for it to be approved. If a proposal is passed by a
vote, the submission to the CC shall include a section for the unresolved
concerns of those who opposed the measure.


When needed, DRC shall conduct teleconferences for specific purposes. Notice
of any committee teleconference shall be sent out to the e-mail list at
least two weeks in advance and a reminder sent out two days before the
teleconference. Such notice shall include the purpose and a proposed agenda.

During teleconferences and face-to-face meetings, the committee shall seek
consensus and, when necessary, vote using a 2/3 majority of participants to
pass a proposal. Any decisions that are made during teleconferences or
in-person meetings shall be posted on line for final approval. Five days
shall be adequate time to test for consensus; if concerns are raised, the
standard two weeks, plus five days for voting, shall apply.

Dispute Resolution Committee
Structure and Process

I. Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) Structure. The DRC is a two-tiered
Committee, involving a DRC Administration Committee (committee governance)
and the DRC Mediator/Arbiter Panel.

DRC Administration Committee: The DRC Administration Committee is
responsible for the governance of the Committee. The Administration
Committee is responsible for the following:
1. Development of Committee structure, general policies, rules, and
2. Reporting to and communicating with the GPUS CC;
3. Training and developing of mediator and arbiters;
4. Receiving complaints and dispute resolution requests;
5. Assigning complaints and dispute resolution requests to mediators or to
an arbitration panel and tracking the progress of such cases through to
6. Reporting the results of mediation and arbitration cases to the GPUS CC
(or steering committee), while protecting confidentiality where appropriate.
7. Maintaining an archive of DRC decisions and rule interpretations

DRC Mediator and Arbiter Pool: This Pool is responsible to:
1. Accept assignments for mediation or arbitration;
2. In mediation, facilitate open discussion and dispute resolution of issue
or personal conflicts through mediation techniques, reporting resolution or
3. In arbitration, collaborate on a arbitration panel by engaging in the
a. Fact-finding
b. Rule or policy interpretation
c. Rendering a panel decision
d. Reporting the decision to the DRC Co-chairs, who shall report to the

II. Mediation Process and Structure: Mediation is the process of bringing
conflicting parties together to discuss their issues and points of
contention in a safe, non-adversarial environment. The process is built
around refereed discussion, problem-solving and compromise. The mediator is
does not act as a hearing officer and does not judge the facts or impose a
solution. Instead, the mediator facilitates the parties in the expression
of their positions and in the exploration of potential solutions or
resolutions to the conflict. The power of this process is found in the fact
that the parties work out mutually acceptable solutions and agree to the
resolution. The process and the details of the resolution shall be
confidential, unless all parties waive confidentiality in writing.

Mediator: Since the mediator is not a judge or fact-finder, it is most
efficient and practical for one mediator to work on an individual conflict.
The mediator needs to:
1. Be without conflict of interest in the matter;
2. Be fair and impartial;
3. Be trained in mediation techniques;
4. Maintain confidentiality in all mediation discussions;
5. Report the resolution or impasse of all mediations and file any
mediation agreements to the Administration Committee.

Appointment of Mediator: Once a conflict or dispute is reported to the DRC
through the appropriate complaint or mediation request process, then DRC
Intake Committee shall seek an available mediator from the pool of
mediators. In selecting an available mediator, an effort should be made to
find a skilled mediator who will be satisfactory to the parties.

Mediator Authority: In a very real sense it is the parties to a dispute who
empower the mediator through their submission to the mediation process.
Since the mediator is not a fact-finder and does not make any determinations
or decisions relative to the dispute, the mediators authority is most
analogous to a facilitator or referee. The mediator is authorized to
maintain the decorum of the discussion, to structure the process, and to
facilitate problem-solving exercises.

III. Arbitration Process and Structure: Arbitration is a quasi-judicial
process in that the arbitrators have fact-finding responsibilities and are
expected to make determinations and decisions which are binding upon the
parties to the dispute. For this reason the arbitration process must be
formal and must follow very clearly defined rules and procedures. The DRC
and the arbitrators must be empowered by the bylaws and the rules and
procedures of the Party.
Timeliness: the DRC arbitration process should be completed within 60 days
of receipt of the grievance. Should this timeline be impossible due to
extenuating circumstances, a full report will be made to the Co-Chairs for
possible assistance.

A. Arbitration Panel: In each case where arbitration is appropriate, the
DRC Committee (or an appropriate subcommittee thereof) shall appoint a three
member arbitration panel. Since this arbitration panel will sit and act as
fact-finders and will issue binding decisions, it is essential that the
panel be carefully appointed so as to avoid all appearance of conflict. For
this reason, the members of the arbitration panel need to:
1. Be without conflict of interest in the matter;
2. Be fair and impartial;
3. Be trained in arbitration methods and techniques;
4. Report the final decision of the Arbitration Panel and file such
decision with the Administration Committee.

B. Challenge of Arbiters: Once an Arbitration Panel is appointed either
party may veto (strike) the participation of one (1) arbiter, without
stating the reason for such veto. In addition, either party may challenge
for cause the participation of an arbiter by stating clear grounds for such
challenge (bias, conflict of interests), The DRC (or an appropriate
subcommittee thereof) shall consider such challenge for cause, granting the
challenge where it is deemed appropriate and fair. Where arbiters are
removed by challenge, then the DRC Committee (or an appropriate subcommittee
thereof) shall appoint replacement arbiters.

C. Arbitration Authority: Because the Arbitration Panels may act as
determiners of fact, making findings of fact and may order remedies to the
parties, it is essential that the authority of the arbiters to perform their
duties be authorized by through specific authorizing language by the Bylaws
and the Rules and Procedures of the USGP. Until such authorization is
specifically granted, the DRC cannot and will not offer arbitration

IV. Initial Complaint Process: The Dispute Resolution Process begins with
a written Complaint or a Request for Dispute Resolution submitted to the

A. Written Complaint:

1. Standing: Complaints or Requests for Dispute Resolution may be
submitted by:
a. Any parties of interests to the dispute; or
b. The Steering Committee
In submitting a Complaint or Request for Dispute Resolution the filing party
shall indicate the partys standing to make the complaint.

2. Timeliness: Complaints must be limited to conduct that took place
within six (6) months of the complaints submission date or conduct that
took place earlier, but was only just discovered within 6 months of the
complaints submission date.

3. Complaint Contents: The complaint should present the details of the
dispute in clear concise detail. As much as possible the complaint should
present only the basic facts and points of dispute or disagreement.
Multiple issues of dispute should either be filed as separate complaints or
a separate counts within the complaint. It is important that the
complaint include information necessary to determine the standing of the
complainant and to determine the timeframe for the complaint. The
complainant should use the basic form provided by the DRC.

B. DRC Complaint Processing: The DRC Intake Committee shall receive the
complaints or requests for resolution.

1. Initial Determinations: The DRC Intake Committee shall make certain
initial determinations and shall report these determinations in an Intake
Report. Based on the written complaint and other information, which may be
sought, the DRC Intake Committee will:

a. Determine whether the complaint involves ethical, interpersonal,
political and/or other issues; and

b. Make a preliminary determination in writing about whether and how to
proceed. This determination shall be reported to the DRC Administrative
Committee and the parties. This Intake Report shall state clearly the
procedure recommended and the reasons for the determination. The same shall
apply to a recommendation of dismissal. This Intake Report should be made
within 30 days of the complaint being received.

2. Initial Actions: In determining how to proceed with a complaint the DRC
Intake Committee may take the following actions:

a. Dismissal: The DRC Intake Committee may recommend dismissal of an
action either as a general dismissal or a dismissal with prejudice.
(1) A complaint may be dismissed for being untimely, stating an issue or
complaint over which the DRC has no authority or ability to resolve, or
raising political issues, which should be resolved through normal party
processes (See Political Issues below).

(2) A complaint may be dismissed with prejudice, if the DRC Intake
Committee concludes that the complaint is untimely, or that complainant
filed her or his complaint in retaliation against a person who had filed a
complaint within the previous six months against the complainant. If a
person has more than one complaint dismissed with prejudice, that persons
actions will be referred to the Ethics Review Panel described below for
further appropriate action.

b. Referral to Mediation. As a general principle mediation would be the
appropriate initial action for most complaints. It is in the nature of
Green process that issues and disputes should be resolved through discussion
and consensus, rather than adversarial process. It is expected that Green
Party members will submit to mediation for the resolution of disputes and
issues, prior to resorting to arbitration. The following shall be the only
exceptions to mediation as the first step in dispute resolution:

(1) Issues of Party ethics and discipline;

(2) Where the history of the dispute makes it clear to the DRC Intake
Committee that mediation would be a fruitless exercise.

c. Referral to an Arbitration Panel: Where a complaint has been to
Mediation, without success (the effort ended in an impasse), or where one of
the above exceptions to prior mediation is met, then the complaint shall be
referred to an Arbitration Panel.

d. Ethics Review Panel: Where the issue or complaint concerns a matter,
which may require Party discipline or sanctions, then the matter shall be
referred directly to an Ethics Review Panel. In such cases it is not
necessary to first pass by the mediation process.

e. Mixed Issues: Where the complaint contains mixed issues requiring
Arbitration and Ethics Review, such complaint may be referred to a combined
Arbitration and Ethics Review Panel for consideration.

3. Classification of Complaints: If the complaint, on its face, raises any
actionable ethical, personal, or political issues, all issues identified by
the PC shall be handled in the following three ways.

a. Political Issues. Political Issues are those issues, which concern the
rule-making, and/or legislative decision-making processes of the Party.
Any political issue raised by a complaint shall be resolved through existing
party processes. It is essential that the consensus process be allowed to
work completely, before the DRC accepts any political complaint for
resolution. The resolution of conflicts through the Green consensus process
is considered the highest form of conflict resolution. It is of vital
importance that the processes of the DRC not interfere with or take the
place of the normal working of the consensus process. The DRC shall,
therefore, refer political issues or complaints back to the correct body for
resolution through the consensus process. This principle does not, however,
prevent the DRC from intervening in political issues, where consensus
process has been finalized and a dispute remains.

b. Interpersonal Disputes. When interpersonal disputes are brought to the
DRC, the complaining party must first indicate what efforts have already
been attempted to resolve the issues, including personal communications with
the other party. Any personal issue raised by the complaint shall be
referred to the relevant parties for resolution through mediation.

c. Challenges to official actions, rulings and decisions: Where the
complaint involves a challenge to official final actions (or inaction),
rulings and decisions of any committee or body of the GPUS the complaint
should, unless otherwise exempt, be referred first to mediation and then if
unresolved to binding arbitration. As noted above, care must be taken not
to cut short the consensus process. For this reason, a complaint may
challenge only a final decision, ruling or action (or inaction) of a
committee or organizational body of the GPUS. It would be improper to
challenge issues in discussion or in voting, consensus process and such
challenges would be referred back to the political process as premature (see
political issues above).

d. Ethical Issues. A complaint may raise the issue of a violation of the
Partys ethical standards and principles.

V. Mediation Procedures: Once the above described initial Complaint
Process is completed by the DRC Intake Committee and a determination is made
that mediation is appropriate, then the following procedures shall be

A. Notification of Parties: The DRC Intake Committee shall provide the
following notification:

1. The Complainant(s) shall be notified that the Complaint has been
accepted and that it is being referred to mediation.

2. The Respondent(s) (parties being complained against) shall be notified
of the Complaint and provided with a copy there of. The Respondent shall be
notified that the Complaint has been referred to mediation and shall be
encouraged to participate in the mediation. The Respondents voluntary
participation is required in order for the matter to go forward to

B. Assignment of Mediator or Mediation Team: The DRC Intake Committee
shall consider the following in assigning the complaint to a mediator or a
mediation team:

1. Is the matter sufficiently complex or sensitive so as to require the
appointment of a mediation team (two to three mediators)? The use of a team
has the advantage of allowing a broader more balanced approach. It also
allows for sharing of the workload.

2. Does the mediator or mediation team have sufficient skills and training
for the particular complaint?

3. Is the mediator or mediation team available and the best fit considering
geographic location and the specific circumstances of the matter?

4. Is the mediator or mediation team sufficiently removed from the issues
to be considered to be capable of providing fair, balanced, unbiased
service? The freedom from bias needs to be a freedom from both actual or
perceived bias. The DRC Intake Committee shall provide the mediator or
mediation team being considered with the minimal information necessary for
the mediator or mediation team to review the matter for conflicts or bias
(Names of parties and basic issue to be resolved).

5. Before the matter is finally assigned to the mediator or mediation team,
the subject parties shall be consulted to be confirm that the selected
mediator or mediation team are acceptable to both parties.

C. Mediator or Mediation Team Review of Complaint and Intake Report: The
mediator or mediation team shall review the Complaint and the Intake Report
to confirm agreement with the conclusions and recommendations of that
report. In the event that the mediator or mediation team should differ with
the DRC Intake Committee relative to the necessary interventions or actions
to take, then the mediator or mediation team shall confer with the DRC
Intake Committee with the objective of seeking consensus as to the
appropriate actions to take. The Intake Report is confidential to the
Intake Committee, the parties, and the proposed mediators or the mediation

D. Mediation Principals and Procedures: Mediation by the DRC shall be
conducted according to the following Principals and Procedures:

1. Mediation Principles:

a. Green Process: Mediation is perfectly aligned with Green Principles.
It places emphasis upon personal responsibility for the resolution of
conflicts and disputes, rather than relying upon externally imposed
judgments or corrective actions.

b. Confidentiality: All mediation shall be done in complete
confidentiality. This confidentiality shall extend to all aspects of the
process from the complaint to the final resolution. All participants in the
process, including the parties and DRC members and mediators, commit
themselves to confidentiality relative to the entire process.

c. Voluntary Participation: Mediation works because the participants
engage in the process voluntarily, making a good faith effort to resolve
their conflicts or issues.

d. Facilitated Communication: An essential part of mediation is the
practice of facilitated communication. Many disputes arise out of an
inability for individuals to communicate clearly and to understand the
positions, perspectives, and sentiments of the other. Mediation provides
the opportunity for each party to hear the other in a non-threatening
ambiance. This process encourages parties to actively listen and to at
least try to understand the perceptions of the other.

e. Problem-solving Techniques: Mediation is joint problem-solving engaged
in by those involved in a dispute or conflict. It takes the emphasis off of
establishing right or wrong and judgmental findings and places the emphasis
on finding mutually acceptable solutions and resolutions.

f. Solutions Determined by the Participants: . In mediation true solutions
and resolutions are those discovered and accepted by the participants
themselves. Mediation is effective due to the fact that the parties take
responsibility for actively seeking mutually acceptable resolution. This
ownership of the solution greatly increases the long-term success of

g. Not a fact-finding or judgment process: It is extremely important
that all participants understand that mediation is neither a fact-finding
nor a judgment process. The mediator is a guide and facilitator of the
discussion and resolution seeking process and not a judge of the facts or
the parties. As noted above, solutions are found by, accepted by, and
implemented by the parties.

2. Mediation Procedures: The DRC is responsible for drafting a useful
manual on Green Party Mediation, which will provide the details for
effective mediation. These procedures will provide the basic outline of the
standard procedures, while the manual will provide the detail and guidance
for effective mediation.

a. Explanation of Procedures: In order for mediation to be effective it is
vital that the participants understand the process. The mediator begins the
mediation explaining the principles of mediation (see above). This
introduction to mediation is designed to help the participants relax and
trust the process. It is common in mediation to have the parties sign a
document agreeing to confidentiality relative to the discussions held in the

b. Statements of the Parties: It is typical for mediation to start off
with a statement by each party of the issues, problems, disputes and the
facts as understood by that party.

* Parties are encouraged to frankly lay out all the known issues and facts.

* Each party making a statement shall be accorded the courtesy of active
listening, without any interruption.

* At the conclusion of a statement, the mediator may ask clarifying
questions, designed to allow the mediator to better understand the issues.
While an opposing party might be allowed to ask a clarifying question at
this point, generally such questions are not helpful in that they tend to
degenerate quickly into a form of cross-examination which is not

*It is common for the mediator to summarize the issues and alleged facts at
the conclusion of the parties statements.

c. To Discuss or Caucus?: Good mediation cannot be conducted according to
a rigid formula. Once each party has presented their view of the issues or
dispute, the mediation moves into the problem-solving stage. This can be
done either by beginning an open discussion between the parties or by the
mediator caucusing privately with each party. The mediator might consider
the following in determining the best technique to use.

*Are the subjects or issues an emotional in nature? If so, immediate
open discussion, without some private problem-solving first, might be
pre-mature and ineffective.

*If the issues are non-emotional, but require in-depth consensus work,
then it may be possible to directly begin joint problem-solving.

*Does the mediator need to seek more information and explore issues and
facts privately with the parties? Sometimes it is wise for the mediator to
probe for more information, both concerning facts and issues, in a private
caucus with each party. Very often a party will share things in private
that they would hesitate to share in openly.

d. Caucusing: The mediator caucuses with a party when the mediator meets
with a party alone. In a face to face mediation, this usually entails
separating the parties so that the mediator can meet separately with each
party. In a phone mediation this may require the mediator having the
ability to place one party on hold, while speaking confidentially with the
other party.

Once the mediator meets with one party, he/she will then meet with the other
party. Depending upon the complexity of the issues and the need, the
mediator may alternate back and forth between the parties, working to bring
the parties positions and search for solutions closer together. The caucus
serves to:

*Allow the mediator to clarify facts and issues in a more relaxed,
non-adversarial ambiance.

*Allow the mediator to relieve any tensions and reassure the parties about
the process.

*Allow the mediator to explore the issues with the parties, looking for
ways to resolve the problems between the parties.

*Determining what facts, issues or possible solutions that might be shared
with the other party.

e. Important Caucus Principles:

*Confidentially: When the mediator seeks additional facts or in caucus,
it is primarily for the purpose allowing the mediator to better understand
the issues and to see potential solutions. The mediator may not share any
such information without the express permission of the party.

*Party Control v. Imposed Solutions: Most people resent others attempting
to control their actions or behavior. It is important that the parties
understand clearly that no one is going to impose a resolution in mediation.
Either the parties take positive control of the solution seeking process or
the mediation will not work. From the beginning the mediator must encourage
the parties to be actively engaged in the problem-solving process.

The mediator is not the problem-solver. She/he is a problem-solving
facilitator, encouraging the parties to engage in an effective
problem-solving exercise. A solution or resolution discovered by the
parties, is their solution and thus much more effective.

*Avoid fact arguments: People often tend to view mediation as a form of
trial and the mediator as a type of judge. It is essential that the
mediator educate the parties and guide them toward productive, solution
oriented processes. While a general understanding of the perceived facts is
important in order for the mediator to understand the issues and problem, it
is not necessary for the mediator to be a fact finder.

The mediator should thus discourage fact arguments. It is often
helpful to point out the importance of perceptions. It is thus not
important to prove whether Party A lied to Party B. It is important,
however, to acknowledge that Party B perceives that Party A lied to him and
that Party B now has difficulty trusting Party A. The mediation issue
becomes how Party B can rebuild his trust for Party A. On the way to the
resolution, Party B may need to consider whether he/she can forgive Party A
for the perceived lack of honesty. At the same time, can Party A put aside
her/his offense at being accused of dishonesty.

*Compromise: All successful mediation requires some compromise on each
side. The compromise may be that the parties will give up the need to prove
which one was right, put aside a hurt or offense, or to move away from an
absolute fixed position.

f. Joint Conferencing: When the mediator feels that it would be
beneficial, she/he might invite the parties back together to discuss the
progress that has been made. These joint conferences could be used to
solidify progress made or to allow the parties to clarify positions. Since
any real resolution must be the work of the two parties, it is important
that at some point the parties come back together to agree together on
resolutions being discussed.

If the resolution is partial, the parties may at some point return to
caucus to work through other issues. When final resolution has been
reached, a final joint conference is used to summarize the progress and
agreement reached.

g. Mediation Agreement: It is important that any agreements reached by the
parties be memorialized in a mediation agreement. The Mediator drafts the
agreement with the consensus agreement of the parties. The following
principles should be followed:

*The agreement should focus upon the agreed solutions arrived at, rather
than the dispute, factual or otherwise.

*Any commitment of the parties to do or not do anything should be clearly

*Unless the mediation agreement expressly states otherwise, the mediation
agreement is not generally confidential. For this reason, confidential
information shared during the mediation should not be placed in the

h. Final Mediation Report: One the mediation has been concluded the
mediator or mediation team should draft a Final Mediation Report. This
report may report results (1) Resolution, (2) Partial Resolution, (3)
Impasse. The Report should indicate the following:

*Where there has been resolution or partial resolution the Mediator shall
attach the Mediation Agreement to the Report.

*Where there the Mediation Agreement involves any agreement or commitments
requiring participation, monitoring, or action from third-parties, this
details need to be clearly delineated, with recommendation for
implementation. This is particularly important if any of the Mediation
Agreements terms require approval or action by any Green Party committee,
caucus or other group.

*Where the final result of the Mediation is impasse, then the Mediator
shall make a recommendation relative to any further official DRC action.

*As in all other aspects of the mediation, the Report shall respect the
confidentiality of the mediation process.

*The Report shall note whether any DRC Mediation Follow-up is

i. Mediation Follow-up: Although some mediations resolve problems
definitively, it is often beneficial to provide some mediation follow-up.
This follow-up may include the following:

*Simple periodic mediator calls to the parties for a short period.

*Mediator availability for advice, counsel, low-level facilitation between
the parties.

*Follow-up Team services: In more complex cases, it may be necessary to
assign a Follow-up Team to monitor compliance and to offer continuing
mediation, as needed. Where this level of follow-up services are needed,
the Follow-up Team shall file a Closure Report when it appears that the
issues are resolved and the Follow-up Team services can be reasonably

j. Evaluation: An evaluation form shall be developed and parties shall be
requested to evaluate the effectiveness of the procedure.

VI. Arbitration Procedures

VII. Ethics Review Panel Procedures

VIII. Appeal Procedures




contact the co-chairs Maya O'Connor and Mark Kamleiter for more info.

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Green Party of the United States