Thursday, June 4, 2020
Mediators Needed in this Time which Tries Our Souls
I am calling upon all Professional Mediators to deploy as a powerful peacemaking force in our current national crisis. We can do so individually and collectively; in our homes, our families, our workplaces, our social media circles, our communities, and anywhere people need to talk about, learn about, think about, and turn-about the social injustice that affects us overtly as well as in subtle, insidious ways.
Why are mediators suited to this calling?
We are skilled in helping people reflect on their conflicts. We are trained to bring forward the unmined interests which divide people on the surface. We are committed to guiding people in difficult, often gut-wrenching conversations in order to achieve a productive peace that honors and supports the humanity inherent in human struggles.
The mediation toolbox is a deep well of resources. We have the ability to reach into it and help. In my opinion, we have the duty to draw from that well now, right now. We as a profession are impartial promoters of equity. We change the world one client at a time. In this extraordinary moment, we should deploy to change the greater society.
What might we do? Here is a quick list for consideration:
- We can immediately activate conversations about what we can do on an organizational and individual level – and then act;
- We can take a stand for social justice and peaceful solution-making, and publish our principles;
- We can offer conflict resolution training and neutral facilitation services to various communities struggling with conflict;
- We can donate money to organizations which promote peaceful resolution of conflict;
- We can employ our writing talents, speaking talents, listening talents, powers of empathy, mindfulness, resourcefulness, compassion, intellect, and effectiveness in all conversations we encounter or initiate about racial prejudice and other injustices.
- We can help our nation identify options and discuss solutions to our deepest issues.
What we cannot do is sit back and let others struggle with the weight of conflict that we are so adept at lifting.
Thank you, and love to you all,