Historically, it remains unclear where family mediation first evolved geographically. However, family mediation has been present in various forms in various cultures world-wide for thousands of years.
Modern-day family mediation is divided[by whom?] into two main fields - mediation and co-mediation. In the former of the two fields a single mediator works with the family in dispute. In the latter of the two fields, two or more mediators work with a family in dispute. Mediations are completed by the use of either joint or single caucuses. In single caucuses the mediator/s caucus one party at a time. In joint caucuses the mediator/s work with all sides to the dispute present in the same session. The majority of family disputes have two sides - however, in family disputes between siblings it is not uncommon for several parties to become involved.
The family mediation process
Family mediation is based on the same principles that apply in mediation generally;-
- Mutual Respect
Family mediation is non-confrontational in nature and progressive. It encourages parties to focus on the future and problem solving strategies rather than the problems of the past. The process is also "child centered" whereby the parties are encouraged to make special provision for the needs of children where the subject parties of such mediations have childcare related issues.
Family mediation worldwide
Family mediation has evolved in both a public and private capacity worldwide in a number of countries. Organizations exist in the United States, The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Italy and Canada.
In some jurisdictions the state or government fund or financially assist family mediation services.
Grebe, Sarah C. (1985). "Co-Mediation: Pros and Cons". In Hansen, James C.; Grebe, Sarah Childs (eds.). Divorce and Family Mediation. Volume 12 of Family therapy collections, ISSN 0735-9152. Rockville, Maryland: Aspen Systems Corporation. p. 75. ISBN 0894436112. Retrieved 6 January 2021.
Co-mediation provides mediators with a system of checks and balances.
- Academy of Professional Family Mediators
- Association of Family and Conciliation Courts
- Family Mediation Council
- Australian Mediation Association
- Arbitrators' and Mediators' Institute of New Zealand Inc.
- European Family Mediators Association
- Family Mediation Canada
8. Mediate UK