Using mediation during contract negotiations or to settle labor disputes (e.g., alleged violations of the labor agreement) offers a number of benefits.  Mediation can assist labor and management avoid economic actions such as strikes and allegations of violations of federal labor laws.  When ongoing relationships are important, as they are in a labor relationship, mediation provides an opportunity to resolve a dispute in a non-adversarial, interest-based approach so that important relationships are repaired and preserved.

Mediation is effective in resolving a number of labor negotiation issues, including:

  • Benefits
  • Salary
  • Job duties and disciplinary actions
  • Retirement issues
  • Seniority issues
  • Employment contracts

Adversarial negotiations can affect work relationships and jeopardize productivity in both the private and public sectors where unions exist.  Working with an experienced mediator helps both labor and management develop the collaborative problem-solving skills needed to experience effective negotiations.  Not only is the immediate issue resolved in an efficient and effective manner, parties are then equipped with the skills needed to avoid or easily resolve issues that arise in the future.  Mediation allows labor and management to address their common interests: the well-being of those employed and the company’s continued economic viability.

If you are involved in a labor dispute or you would like more information about using mediation in the workforce, John Scott, Esquire can help.  Contact him at 707.747.0839 or by email at