Neutrality & Confidentiality in Mediation- Redix/Argyle Case Essay

1608 Words Mar 10th, 2012 7 Pages
Mediators do not have laws and regulations to prove their legitimacy as judges do. Instead, they must depend on their own neutrality and the voluntariness of the parties involved (Astor, 2007, p. 222). These two principles, combined with the mandate of confidentiality, allow mediations the chance to be successful. Should these elements not be in place the mediation would not be able to serve it’s definition; “a process in which an impartial third party facilitates communication and negotiation and promotes voluntary decision making by the parties to the dispute. (Model Standards of Conduct, 2005)” In the Radix/Argyle case we see how the foundation of mediator neutrality, a mutual willingness or voluntariness to participate in the …show more content…
In addition to speaking to both parties in a plural sense, each was asked to participate equally. The mediator asked both parties to consider sharing future goals of the company, which was a large risk to both companies (Friedman & Himmelstein, 2008, p. 271). Had only one party been asked to share, this would have greatly reduced the credibility of the mediator.
As we turn to the next principle of voluntariness, the Radix/Argyle case is extremely apropos as an example. Radix and Argyle voluntarily selected to enter mediation because the risk of losing a costly court case was a real possibility for both parties. By seeking mediation, they indicated at least a partial commitment to reaching an agreement. In the definition of mediation itself we see that the goal is to “promote voluntary decision making.” (Model Standards of Conduct, 2005). The fact that the decisions would be their own was emphasized from the beginning of the mediation with Radix and Argyle:
At the start, the parties agreed to try the understanding based approach to mediation—to assume responsibility for resolving their conflict, to work together with everyone in the same room, to reach agreements about how we will work that make sense to all of the participants (including the lawyers), and to go beneath the problem to identify what is most important to both sides underlying the problem (Friedman & Himmelstein, 2008, p. 273).
Parties must feel that they are in control of the
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