When all parties agree to discuss and resolve a dispute, mediation can be used to avoid civil court and ongoing tension. Mediation is a voluntary and confidential way to resolve disputes without giving the decision-making power to someone else (like a judge).

It involves sitting down with the other side in the dispute and a third-party who is neutral and impartial (the mediator). The mediator helps the parties identify the important issues in the disagreement and decide how they can resolve it themselves. The mediator doesn't tell them what to do, or make a judgment about who's right and who's wrong. Control over the outcome of the dispute stays with the parties.

Individuals or groups can request mediation services through the Justice Program to resolve one to on or neighborhood disputes.