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  Mediation Program  
  The Division Now Offers Voluntary Mediation of Complaints  
  Man Working with PaperThe New Jersey Division on Civil Rights has developed a voluntary mediation program that provides an effective process, in appropriate cases, for resolving complaints before the Division that is less costly and time-consuming than traditional methods of investigation, conciliation and prosecution.  

It is apparent that many of the complaints filed with this agency could be resolved to the satisfaction of the disputants if they could be addressed closer in time to the point of conflict. In that connection, mediation offers many advantages to the participants including:

  Reduction in litigation and other expenses - Because of the high success rate achieved through mediation, cases are resolved early in the process (usually in 60 days or less), thereby eliminating or reducing expenses associated with responding to a Division investigation. Litigation expenses are completely avoided.  
  Voluntary participation -The only cases that will be mediated are those where both the complainant and the respondent agree to try to resolve their dispute through mediation.  
Use of trained and experienced mediators - All of the mediators used in the program are trained and experienced in the latest mediation techniques and are separate from the investigative units of the Division. Further, there is no charge for this service.
  Confidentiality -The mediator will treat all information revealed during the mediation with the strictest confidence. The mediator will transmit none of the information developed during the mediation to any other unit in the Division anytime during or after the mediation, no matter the outcome.  

Man Working with PaperDisputants control outcome - The complainant and the respondent have complete control in determining the outcome of the mediation. The role of the mediator is to serve as a neutral third party. The mediator can neither impose a settlement nor make judgments about the facts or merits of the case on either side. Also, either party may withdraw anytime without a penalty.

  High probability of settlement - Experience shows that upwards of 65 % of disputes submitted to mediation are resolved to the satisfaction of both parties to the dispute without the need for further proceedings.
  In order to ensure that the mediation program continues to be as successful as it can be, the Division on Civil Rights asks all participants to complete a survey at the end of the session. The completed survey questionnaires are delivered promptly to the Director, who reviews the comments and critiques for ways to improve the process and the facilities. A sample of the survey questionnaire can be viewed here.  


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