8:00 – 8:15 Introduction of Faculty. Review training materials, expectations of participants, training protocols, assign small groups.
8:15 – 9:00 Empathy exercise and debrief.
9:00 – 9:30 Conflict resolution processes. Definitions and discussion of the differences between the processes of litigation, arbitration, negotiation and mediation, with emphasis on Client-centered mediation.
9:30 – 10:30 Arbitration v. Mediation Exercise. Students break into groups of three. In each group one student (for this exercise, called the neutral) plays the role of an arbitrator, then a mediator. Feedback and discussion.
10:15 – 10:30 Break
10:30 – 11:00 The APFM Standards of Practice for Family Mediators. Ethical issues in mediation regarding conduct, confidentiality, neutrality, conflicts of interest, disclosure of professional competency.
11:00 – 11:30 An overview of divorce mediation. Definition and goal of Client-centered mediation. Steps in the process. Stages of Family Mediation.
11:30 –12:00 The initial consultation in the divorce mediation process: Setting the stage. The role of the mediator. Discussion of Ethical issues. Legal advice vs. information. Review of Agreement to Mediate. Mediation with multi-cultural families (religious issues, cultural norms, etc.)
12:00 – 12:30 Lunch Break
12:30 – 1:30 Faculty Demonstration Role play: Initial Consultation. Observation and discussion.
1:30 – 3:00 Role of the mediator and mediator neutrality. Ethical considerations of impartiality and neutrality. The interplay between impartiality, neutrality and empowerment. Power and intimidation tactics. Emphasizing process and focusing on issues. Empathy, listening skills and providing balance. Safety and the psychological well-being of the participants. Remaining neutral. Personal opinions vs. professional obligations. Ethical and professional responsibility where domestic abuse is present. Considerations for multi-cultural issues.
3:00 – 3:15 Break
3:15 – 4:45 Group Role play #1: Initial Consultation. Debrief and discussion.
4:45 – 5:00 Summary of day and wrap up.