Beginning the middle of March 2020, Northern Community Mediation (NCM) no longer offered face-to-face mediation. Since that time, in order to protect the staff, mediators and clients from COVID-19, all mediations have been done via Zoom. This policy will continue until further notice.
Criteria that will be used to determine when it is safe to return to face-to-face mediations will include but not necessarily be limited to the following:
- It will not be necessary to require the participants to wear masks and/or face shields.
- Herd immunity has been reached or at the very least is close to being reached.
It is important to keep in mind that doing mediations via Zoom has had some distinct advantages. First, everyone comes into the mediation with a common enemy–COVID-19. Second, everyone has to work together to ensure that the technology does not interfere with the mediation process. Third, not only can each participant see everyone else “at the table,” she can also see herself, which means that if someone has a grumpy face on, she cannot help buy realize what she looks like to others. This helps to change attitude.
To help put the impact of COVID-19 upon NCM into perspective, a comparison has been made between two time frames: March 18, 2018 to July 23, 2019 and March 18, 2020 to July 23, 2021. Click on the link below to view the table.
Pre-Zoom vs. Zoom