top of page
  • Ed

Mediation in the dark (arts)

If you, like me, have just returned from a holiday away involving a trip with a low cost airline, you probably don’t need to be told that Ryanair and their pilots’ union Forsa have been in dispute over transfers, wages and seniority.

Thankfully the two sides have agreed to mediate to resolve the dispute and in an attempt to avoid any further strike action (although last Friday’s strike still went ahead after the agreement to mediate had been achieved).

Kieran Mulvey the former head of the Republic of Ireland's Workplace Relations Commission is to act as mediator.

The strikes in the Ireland, UK, Belgium and Sweden affected over three thousand customers in mid peak tourist season. Hopefully next year won’t see a repeat of the delays and the consequential claims for compensation from thousands of stranded customers.

Talks began this week, which coincided with my return to the office, if I’d have known I could offered my assistance. At the time of publishing the talks are now into their fourth day.

Meanwhile over on the Solomon islands the dispute over the death of a man allegedly killed by a sorcerer has been successfully and peacefully mediated to settlement.

The mediation involved the family of the deceased, the sorcerer, the police and local village leaders.

From dark arts to dark devlings, well mining. Chile’s Caserones copper mine produces over 100,000 tonnes of copper per year, 2 per cent of the countries output of the increasingly precious metal.

The mine owners (Pan Pacific Copper Co Ltd, a partnership between JX Holdings Incorporated, Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co Ltd, and Mitsui & Co Ltd) and workers have been in talks for some time but have agreed to extend the mediation process until Thursday this week.

This (unlike the Ryanair mediation) has led to a suspension of further threatened strike action.

Human resources vice president for Lumina, Claudio Raffo, said that common ground had been established during the first phase of the mediation and both sides were looking to finalise a deal in the time allowed by the agreed extension of the process.

“We hope that our workers will appreciate the effort we have made to put a competitive offer on the table, especially considering the fact the company is still seeking to set achievable production targets and control its costs”

In other mining news in New Caledonia, Rheebu Nuu (an environmentalist group) has requested mediation over the sudden closure of Kouaoua’s nickel mine.

There have been arson attacks and protests at the site by youth groups trying to stop the clearing of trees by the company, as a result the SLN Nickel Company took the decision to close the mine indefinitely with a loss of 400 jobs.

Rheenu Nuu has asked for mediation to stop the “scorched earth” technique and find a better and more environmentally friendly manner in which to extract the nickel.

Following the closure it has also accused SLN of blackmail and dirty tricks.

The lobby group has asked for the French state and northern provincial authorities to at as mediators and to show some sympathy to the area which has produced significant income for the whole country.

In New England the Conservation Law Foundation and the Pease Development Authority (PDA) have asked for mediation assistance to conclude the $100 million law suit which PDA faces.

It’s a claim based on the failure of PDA to get proper permissions to discharge pollutants into the state waterways of the Great Bay Estuary.

CLF’s attorney Matt Wisnieff said “While the parties believe they have come to agreement on how to resolve some of their disputes, certain issues remain unresolved”

The CLF is looking for backdated fines to 2009 for the violations and PDA are arguing that they are immune due to being a state agency, and in addition couldn’t apply for a Clean Water Act permit as they had one in existence which covered the discharge.

CLF says the discharge carried pollutants form a number of sources including streets, car parks and municipal buildings which contained heavy metals and perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA). “The toxic chemicals PFOS and PFOA are of growing concern, particularly for developing fetuses and newborns…These chemicals have resulted in the closure of a Portsmouth drinking water well at Pease International, as well as drinking water contamination elsewhere in New Hampshire.”

The two sides have asked for court sponsored ADR/mediation for a full day before October.

Finally this week can I point you towards a fantastic article on the successes of mediation in various jurisdictions, I can’t do better than quote the article

“Mediation has solidified its position as an ADR mechanism for commercial conflicts in several jurisdictions, thanks partly to the now “indescribably expensive” fees associated with litigation and arbitration globally. Furthermore, practitioners in more established centres of mediation, such as the US, the UK and Singapore, report that the increased sophistication and specialisation of mediators has convinced businesses of its viability as an avenue for dispute resolution. However, the uptake of mediation as an ADR mechanism has not been uniform across jurisdictions”

Read the link for more information on where and how mediation is growing (here in the UK it’s becoming more readily accepted and acceptable to turn to mediators whether you go direct or via your lawyer feel free to give Northwest Mediation a call to discuss your options).

Northwest Mediation can help with any dispute whether it's an employment issue or the sale at an under value of a property, a fight with a neighbour, family issues, commercial disputes or inheritance arguments contact Northwest Mediation on 07931318347 or via email at

neighbour mediation; commercial dispute resolution; commercial dispute; corporate dispute; commercial mediator; family mediation; inheritance mediation; property mediator;

4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page