Alternative Dispute Resolution
“The mission of the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) team is to minimize disruption in the workplace; preserve business relationships; foster a respectful work environment; build trust; promote communication; and provide efficient, effective ADR services to CDC/ATSDR employees.”
CDC/ATSDR believes that people are valuable and should have the right tools to perform their jobs to the best of their abilities. ADR is one of those tools. OEEO, through the ADR Program, offers an unbiased, neutral resource for all employees toward preventing and managing workplace conflicts. ADR deals with each situation individually and confidentially.
ADR is a resource available to employees if you:
- Are not sure who to talk to about a workplace concern
- Want an informal, non-escalating approach to a dispute
- Want to discuss options for resolving issues
ADR is a collection of processes, such as Mediation or Facilitated Discussion, elected by employees to informally and confidentially resolve workplace conflicts or disputes. These processes are called alternative because they are an alternative to grievances and EEO complaints; however, ADR does not displace those traditional processes.
ADR is voluntary on the part of the employee that elects to utilize the service. Managers and supervisors are required by CDC policy to participate in good faith by coming to ADR prepared, actively listening, and participating in discussions. Managers are encouraged to recommend the use of ADR, but it is always voluntary for an employee. ADR empowers and enables the participating parties to develop and seek mutually acceptable resolutions.
A neutral third party, or mediator, helps participants in ADR to communicate, develop ideas, and reach a mutual agreement on issues or disputes. Mediators do not take sides, represent participants, provide advice, or decide outcomes. When an agreement is reached through ADR, the mediator is responsible for capturing the terms of the agreement in writing. A written and signed agreement reached in ADR becomes a contact between the employee and the agency. In certain cases, a summary or verbal agreement may suffice.
ADR has experienced mediators available to provide the following services:
- Employee and management consultations
- Mediation/ Facilitated Discussion
- Conflict coaching
- Conflict resolution and management
- Prevention of bullying and harassment
- Effective communication
- Team building (with DiSC profile)
- Fact-finding/informal (non-EEO-related) investigations
- Organizational Assessments