Annual Report 2016/2017

  • August 16, 2017

Submitted by CBABC Sections

Summary of Meetings

Number of Meetings Held: 10

September 27, 2016
Guest Speakers Kathryn Sainty Q.C. and Marion Allan
Meeting Title/Topic: How to Become a Mediator #101
Synopsis: We heard from two experienced and in demand mediators on how to establish and build your mediation practice.

October 28, 2016
Guest Speakers: Carrie Gallant B.A. (Psych), J.D., Mediator, Leadership Coach and Negotiation Strategist, President Gallant Solutions Inc., and Sharon Sutherland LL.M., M.A., Mediator and Mediation Consultant, Principal True North Dispute Management
Meeting Title/Topic: ETHICS in MEDIATION - Working with Unrepresented Participants
Synopsis: With increasing numbers of self-represented litigants, mediators and counsel in mediation are faced with ethical challenges that simply don’t arise in the same way when all parties are represented. What is the mediator’s responsibility with respect to unconscionable agreements? Is there an obligation to ensure parties seek independent legal advice in some circumstances? Does an evaluative mediator run a risk of being seen to give legal advice to one or both parties? What added concerns arise for a lawyer when negotiating with a self-represented party? Do any of those concerns change in a mediation? Join Carrie Gallant and Sharon Sutherland for an interactive discussion of mediation ethics for both mediators and mediation counsel, with a special focus on mediating with self-represented parties.

November 15, 2016
Guest Speaker: Sarah MacEachern, Partner, Borden Ladner Gervais
Meeting Title/Topic: The Ins and Outs of Dispute Resolution Clauses in Contracts
Synopsis: Given the cost of litigation in commercial disputes, personal injury and family law, dispute resolution processes continue to gain importance. We heard advice from a senior practitioner as to how to best incorporate dispute resolution clauses into contracts.

December 6, 2016
Guest Speaker: N/A
Meeting Title/Topic: "Speed-iation" - A Speed Networking Event, Mediation Style
Synopsis: Are you a mediator looking to expand your network of other mediators? Or a lawyer hoping to meet some great mediators to work with in the future? The ADR Subsection hosted an evening of quick paced "Speed-iation": Speed networking, mediation-style! We invited mediators and lawyers alike to join us at the Salt Tasting Room for a fun evening of networking in a relaxed setting.

January 17, 2017
Guest Speaker: Mr. Gabriel M. Somjen Q.C.
Meeting Title/Topic: The Power of an Apology in ADR and Litigation Settings
Synopsis: In many ADR and litigation settings, there is a 'presenting problem' often put forward as a legal or contractual breach; and then there is the relational problem that is the real impetus for the dispute. Dealing with the broken realtionship and emotion in a dispute is hard; but an apology can take away the power of what might be the bigger problem, and lead to a resolution of the legal problem. Mr. Somjen spoke from more than 40 years of experience to bring us a guide to using apologies appropriately and effectively. This was a discussion not to be missed!

February 21, 2017
Guest Speakers: Kamaljit Lehal and Shelina Neallani
Meeting Title/Topic: Dispute Resolution, Family Violence, and Outcomes for Women
Synopsis: We heard the preliminary findings of the Law Foundation sponsored research on how Family Dispute Resolution practitioners screen and assess cases when violence against women is present. The BC Family Law Act (FLA) requires lawyers and family dispute resolution professionals to screen for “family violence” and to assess the safety and ability of participants to use DR processes. There was a review of the encouraging and not so encouraging findings, followed by a discussion about what practices have developed, what is working, what isn’t and where there are gaps.

March 21, 2017
Guest Speaker: Leah George-Wilson, Gowling WLG
Meeting Title/Topic: What Do the TRC's Calls to Action Mean for the DR Community?
Synopsis: The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s “Calls to Action” to redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation with indigenous or Aboriginal people. The Calls to Action include a number focused on the justice sector including the call to ensure lawyers receive appropriate cultural competency training, the call for law schools to offer a course in Aboriginal people and the law, numerous calls relating to criminal justice and calls for equity for aboriginal people in the legal system (to name a few). What are the implications of the TRC and the Calls to Action for those who work in conflict resolution and conflict management roles? What are our obligations and responsibilities as conflict resolvers, conflict managers and Canadian citizens? What does this mean for how we think about our work, how we engage with our clients (Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal), how we run our practice and our workplaces? What are some tangible steps that we can take to move forward in what might seem like a daunting journey?

April 18, 2017
Guest Speakers: Carol Hickman QC - Quay Law Centre, Arlene Henry QC - Arlene H Henry Law Corporation, and Ann Lee - Mediator Roster Manager, MediateBC
Meeting Title/Topic: Everything You Wanted to Know About Med Arb, But Were Afraid to Ask…
Synopsis: A primer on med-arb, an introduction to the new med arb standards and the new med arb roster with Ann Lee, Manager of the Roster Program, Mediate BC Society, Carol Hickman Q.C., and Arlene Walker Q.C., both highly experienced and knowledgeable mediators, arbitrators and med-arbitrators, who played a key role in the development of the Standards: Practical information sharing for those wanting to participate in med arb as counsel, or as the med-arbitrator, with time for questions and discussion.

May 23, 2017
Guest Speaker: Marion J. Allan, Clark Wilson LLP, and John Logan, Rosedale on Robson
Meeting Title/Topic: Effective Advocacy in Mediation
Synopsis: Are you a litigator wanting to effectively advocate for your clients at mediation, while leaving your weapons and win/lose mentality at the door? Or a mediator wanting to help counsel in mediations be more helpful to the process? The Civil Litigation and ADR subsections' hosted a joint meeting on mediation advocacy. Marion Allen and John Logan presented tips and tricks, based on their wealth of experience, for being a great advocate in mediation.

Comments and Observations of the Chair