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DOE Mediation Service Announcement

October 18, 2012 - 9:14am

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DOE Mediation Service Announcement
MEMORANDUM FOR ALL SECRETARIAL OFFICERS 

FROM: ROBERT R. NORDHAUS
GENERAL COUNSEL

SUBJECT: DOE MEDIATION SERVICE 

The Office of Dispute Resolution has established the DOE MEDIATION SERVICE, a new pilot program available to headquarters employees. Initiation of this pilot reflects DOE's commitment to the early resolution of workplace conflicts as well as the record of success that mediation has established in the private sector and at other government agencies. 

Mediation is a voluntary, informal and confidential process in which parties work together, with a trained mediator, to find a mutually acceptable solution to their problem. Mediators do not make decisions for the parties or render any judgment concerning the issues in dispute. 

The DOE MEDIATION SERVICE will provide a mediator team of headquarters employees for referrals from the Office of Civil Rights, Headquarters Labor Management and Employee Relations Services, the Office of Contractor Employee Protection and the DOE ombudsperson. In addition, managers may request mediators for any situation where they have an organizational conflict or where communication problems are hampering effectiveness. For example, mediation can be helpful in realignment initiatives, if responsibilities overlap and appear ambiguous or where functions are changing rapidly and accountability is unclear. Almost any workplace conflict can be the subject of a mediation; our goal is to diminish friction, increase productivity and reduce the escalation of disputes. 

Over the next several months, you and managers within your office will be invited to a training session to learn more about this program and about alternative dispute resolution techniques. Please disseminate this notice to all supervisory personnel in your office and encourage them to attend the training and to consider using the DOE MEDIATION SERVICE. 

For more information or to discuss making a referral, please call Phyllis Hanfling, Director, Office of Dispute Resolution at 586- 6972

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