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  • Writer's pictureEd Johnson

We are five

It seems only weeks ago that I launched Northwest Mediation as a new project, a dedicated business to help other businesses with their commercial problems, to avoid issues I'd experienced in other businesses I'd worked for and owned. Alongside that business assistance Northwest Mediation expanded to help families in dispute, local authorities with child care issues and neighbourhood charities. The last five years have been a rewarding experience as NWM goes from strength to strength, it's a slow burner but by keeping things small and personal success levels have remained high.

With the limited access to courts and lawyers mediation is even more so now than ever the best choice to find a resolution for your dispute. Get your dispute resolved now while you can’t go anywhere you can really concentrate on what’s important and what deserves your time and energy.

Northwest Mediation uses Zoom, Skype and FaceTime as well as the phone and emails to resolve disputes so please do not feel that you cannot contact us as there are limits on physical meetings.

Not every mediation can be successful and not every offer is taken up with the relish Northwest Mediation would like, unfortunately when I comes to international mediation the act of refusal is often the least bad event.

Having rejected the offer of mediation in relation to the war in its northern reaches the Ethiopian government decided instead to bomb the Tigrayan capital Mekelle. The deaths of hundreds of people and more fleeing to Sudan is the result of this action, pressure will continue from the international community for a peaceful resolution but as with all mediations all parties have to want to engage in the process for it to be successful.

UMFA (University of Manitoba Faculty Association) and the University administration began mediation this week to avoid strike action by staff.

UMFA president Michael Shaw said “The administration has suggested mediation […] and hinted that they now have some room to move at the table…We’re hopeful that room to move addresses our concerns.”

An open letter from the University President Michael Benarroch and five VPs said “The university remains committed ultimately to bringing UMFA salaries more in line with salaries at peer universities”

Shaw stated that UMFA’s opinion was that “It’s clear that this isn’t just about the administration. It’s also very much about the government…The Pallister government’s position has every appearance of using UMFA as an example for the rest of the public sector…So, they’re pressuring the administration to keep us near the bottom of the U15.”

Keeping the salaries as low as possible so as not to set a precedent for other universities, it’s important to know what the pressures on the parties are in any mediation, not to focus purely on what is being said or what the surface dispute is, that’s why active listening is one of the key skills of a mediator. For instance in a mediation a while ago the surface issue was the division of the inheritance but the underlying issues were conflicts within the family at several levels, only once those conflicts were opened up about and discussed and ultimately dealt with that the original dispute could and was resolved.

Georgia (that’s the country not the state for those Trump supporters who have issues with counting) where UNICEF is supporting mediation services for children affected by the pandemic.

The local non-government organisation “Initiative for Social Change” is working with Unicef and the National Agency for Crime Prevention and Probation of Georgia to provide quality online mediation services as there can no longer be any face to face mediation.

Throughout the pandemic Northwest Mediation has continued to provide online mediation to clients for family and civil disputes, including neighbour disagreements, contract disputes and debt claims, there’s no better way to find a resolution for your problem than to give us a call.

In Jamaica the court system continues to promote restorative justice via mediation Delroy Chuck, Jamaica’s Justice Minister, said he wants mediation to be used for many small claims and some complex matters as well to help reduce the court workload.

“We have far too many matters going to court. The end result is that cases are now being set for 2025, 2026 and in some cases 2027. To my mind, when you set matters so far down the road – beyond the next three years – I believe that for the litigants it’s a lose-lose situation. There is no way either party benefits from having a matter drag on for years…Therefore, when the Mediation Act is finalized and passed in Parliament, my great hope is that more litigants will seek to use mediation, because when you use mediation, it is a win-win situation”

The legislative steps are underway to draft both a Mediation Act and a Restorative Justice Act to enable the Minister’s desires to become reality.

The minister added “We must get away from the posture of ‘it’s all or nothing’. We have to be careful that when we go for all or nothing, we might end up getting nothing, and so mediation is extremely important”.

The benefits of mediation are clear have you tried it yet?

As we’ve said before choose to mediate early and resolve your issues effectively, timeously, and with less stress and costs than going to your solicitor. You have an interest in the outcome the sooner you get round the mediation table the quicker you can move forward and avoid the grilling a cross examination in court would put you through.

By having a deep and meaningful discussions with parties the mediator elicits what the true “red-lines” are and where there is the potential for compromise, it is with this structured period of reflection that the parties are then able to reach an accord.

The flexible nature of mediation and the possible outcomes make it an ideal way to resolve disputes in an ever changing world and the open nature of discussions in mediation whilst remaining confidential allows all sides to engage fully in the process and understand the needs of all involved allowing parties to reach a conclusion which both sides can live with and move on.

There are so many situations which could have been resolved by early intervention of mediation it continues to surprise me the lengths the public will go to avoid referral.

Whether you need a mediator to help out with a construction matter in the Northwest, or council’s plans in Cheshire, a civil mediator in London, a commercial mediator in Manchester, a dispute resolution for your family in Liverpool, a neighbourhood mediation in Stockport, then our mediators at Northwest Mediation can help.

Mediation is cheaper, quicker and less stressful than running any case to court, it 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, civil mediation or inheritance, wills and probate arguments contact Northwest Mediation on 07931318347 or via email at

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