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Lowballing the Public: Mediators serving without a binding ethics code

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Texas Conflict Coach

Texas Conflict Coach


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The practice of mediation is largely unregulated throughout the United States.  In contrast to more formalized professions, such as nursing, social work, law, medicine or accounting, mediators generally have a fraction of the training, have no required ethics code, and no minimum quality testing.  Dr. Goetz will chronicle current efforts in voluntary mediator certification underway in California to raise the level of mediator education and training and require a binding ethics code to serve the public.

Dr. Goetz has trained hundreds of mediators during the last 7 years through the California State University system. Prior to developing the mediation program, he was the founding Dean and President of Concord Law School, the first nationally accredited online law school. Dr. Goetz advocates for a stronger sense of professionalism in the field of mediation, and recently co-authored with Dr. Jennifer Kalfsbeek the article “Serving the Public: The Case for Formally Professionalizing Court-Connected and Litigated Case Mediation.” He currently serves as the co-chair of a Southern California Mediation Association Ad Hoc Committee on Voluntary Mediator Certification.

Pattie Porter,  LCSW, AAP is the President of Conflict Connections®, Inc. in San Antonio, TX.

Tracy Culbreath is currently a graduate student at the Univ. of Baltimore pursuing a Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management.