Following a successful pilot period that began in September 2002, the training is the first step towards building the boroughs first mediation service, managed by locals for locals.
Mediation is a confidential process, which assists 2 parties in reaching an agreement to resolve conflicts, such as neighbour and noise disputes or youth crime, and to improve the situation. The agreement aims to improve quality of life and avoid future conflicts.
Once the service is up and running local housing officers, police officers and neighbourhood wardens, will refer mediation cases to the Merton Team.
The next step for the 12 volunteers is to form a Mediation Management Committee, which will oversee the future development of the scheme, and to gain valuable experience by shadowing professional mediators undertaking cases.
The mediation service will be launched within the next few months and will be rolled out across the borough, overseen by the newly formed Management Committee, in partnership with MPAC and Merton Community Safety Trust.
Andrew Judge, Leader of the Council said: “Mediation can help resolve conflicts between neighbours and other disputes and prevent situations getting out of hand. MPAC partners are committed to improving the quality of life for everyone living and working in the borough. I think the development of the Mediation Scheme has an important role to play in making Merton safe and sound.”
For more details on MPAC or Merton Mediation Team contact Breffni O’Rourke, MPAC Project Co-ordinator on 0208 545 4146