Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice
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Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice
Expanding the critical perspective of justice to suggest restorative processes and ADR as tools for reparation.
Curated by Rob Duke
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The “Recidivism Trap,” Or Why Measuring Failure Is the Wrong Way to Determine Whether Justice Policies Work |

The “Recidivism Trap,” Or Why Measuring Failure Is the Wrong Way to Determine Whether Justice Policies Work | | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it

When we look at how well or poorly a program or strategy in the criminal justice realm is working, the gold standard of assessment has traditionally been whether or not the strategy lowers recidivism rates.

Yet, in an intriguing new paper published this month, nationally regarded justice reform experts Jeffrey Butts and Vincent Schiraldi caution against falling into the “recidivism trap.”

When used as the sole measure of effectiveness, Schiraldi and Butts write, “recidivism misleads policymakers and the public…” and “focuses policy on negative rather than positive outcomes.”

Recidivism is not a comprehensive measure of success for criminal justice in general or for community corrections specifically, according to the two authors. When used to judge the effects of justice interventions on behavior, the concept of recidivism may even be harmful, “as it often reinforces the racial and class biases underlying much of the justice system.”

And that’s a big problem say Butts and Schiraldi.

Rob Duke's insight:
Measure instead: "desistance".  These are things that show a tendency towards more positive modes of living, like:

1. Getting older and maturing 
2. Family and relationships 
3. Sobriety 
4. Employment 
5. Hope and motivation 
6. Having something to give to others 
7. Having a place within a social group 
8. Not having a criminal identity 
9. Being “believed in”

So, given this, what changes could we make in our Justice System:

1. Insist That Recidivism Comparisons Involve Appropriately Matched Groups;
2. Use Other Measures to Assess the Effectiveness of Justice;
3. Increase the Policy Salience of Desistance;

Put another way, this is similar to that old illustration that firefighters present as the most basic fire education in school: the fire triangle.  Remember that on the three sides there was fuel, heat, and oxygen.  The idea was that if you take away even one of these, then the fire goes out.  This model is very similar at it's most basic level, because we know from research that crime is an intersection of economics, social disorganization, and maturity, thus this model seeks to bolster all three conditions by creating a sort of fire triangle matrix with employment, relationships, and maturity as the most basic factors that we seek to address.  This is a fundamental change from simply warehousing offenders in a punitive or incapacitation model waiting until they "age out" of crime.
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Rob Duke's curator insight, March 26, 10:50 AM
Measure instead: "desistance". These are things that show a tendency towards more positive modes of living, like: 
1. Getting older and maturing 
 2. Family and relationships 
 3. Sobriety 
 4. Employment 
 5. Hope and motivation 
 6. Having something to give to others 
 7. Having a place within a social group 
 8. Not having a criminal identity 
 9. Being “believed in” 

So, given this, what changes could we make in our Justice System: 
 1. Insist That Recidivism Comparisons Involve Appropriately Matched Groups; 
 2. Use Other Measures to Assess the Effectiveness of Justice; 
 3. Increase the Policy Salience of Desistance.

Put another way, this is similar to that old illustration that firefighters present as the most basic fire education in school: the fire triangle. Remember that on the three sides there was fuel, heat, and oxygen. The idea was that if you take away even one of these, then the fire goes out. This model is very similar at it's most basic level, because we know from research that crime is an intersection of economics, social disorganization, and maturity, thus this model seeks to bolster all three conditions by creating a sort of fire triangle matrix with employment, relationships, and maturity as the most basic factors that we seek to address. This is a fundamental change from simply warehousing offenders in a punitive or incapacitation model waiting until they "age out" of crime.
Dustin Drover's comment, March 31, 3:25 PM
This was a very unfamiliar and informative read. I never even thought about how changing what you measure as a way to change the out come. It seems as though all we care about is recidivism rates, which makes sense because it is a fundamental problem with our justice system. This article gave great insight to how we can change that problem by changing how we view and measure it. I like how they explained how measuring positive outcomes would inspire corrections staff to “to pay more attention to connecting clients with services, supports, and opportunities that facilitate desistance,” and I couldn’t agree more. When we focus on the bad things someone does we internalize our image of them as bad or “a lost cause”, but if we focus on their positive traits we also give them the feeling that someone believes in them. And when we feel that, we habitually want to do better because it means something.
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LA County Probation Wins Award for Its Trauma-Informed LA Model |

LA County Probation Wins Award for Its Trauma-Informed LA Model | | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
The National Association of Counties (NACo) has awarded Los Angeles County Probation an Achievement Award for its LA Model Juvenile Rehabilitation program at Campus Kilpatrick, a $58 million facility opened last July in the hills above Malibu, that provides treatment and healing for kids in residence.

These Achievement Awards “honor innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents,” according to NACo, which called the LA Model a “ground-breaking, holistic approach to juvenile justice.”

The National Association of Counties hands out 18 awards in various categories, recognizing counties running programs that address health, criminal justice, youth issues, civic engagement, and more.

The innovatively therapeutic, research-guided youth facility replaced a rundown juvenile probation camp plagued by decades of neglect and outdated practices in the nation’s largest juvenile justice system.

The LA Model is comprehensive. It includes training in Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), for example, which has been demonstrated to help incarcerated young people better understand, reframe, and redirect their emotions and impulses. DBT also appears to successfully address staff burnout, which is common in both adult and youth lockups.
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Is Uber’s Woke Makeover for Real? | Vanity Fair

Is Uber’s Woke Makeover for Real? | Vanity Fair | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
In a blog post, Uber announced that it will let sexual assault, rape, and harassment victims pursue their claims as they see fit, rather than forcing them into mandatory, private arbitration, which was previously required by Uber’s terms of service. Riders, passengers, and employees in the U.S. will now have the option of taking the company to court, or going through a mediator where confidentiality is optional. (The new rule is largely for riders; both employees and drivers have been able to opt out for several years.) “We have learned it’s important to give sexual assault and harassment survivors control of how they pursue their claims,” Uber’s post read. “Whatever they decide, they will be free to tell their story wherever and however they see fit.” The company said it also plans to release data on sexual violence and other incidents that occur on its platform.
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‘If We Let Everybody Go, There’d Be Nobody in Prison’

‘If We Let Everybody Go, There’d Be Nobody in Prison’ | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Last year, Ebony Thomas was in jail, unable to afford bail. This year, she’s a spokeswoman for Black Mama’s Bail Out Day.
Rob Duke's insight:

Frankly, the whole system is a bit depressing.  So rigid and resistant to change.  So ineffective and yet, so pervasive.

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Where should inmates go when they leave jail? Alaska plans big changes to halfway-house system.

Where should inmates go when they leave jail? Alaska plans big changes to halfway-house system. | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
The Department of Corrections wants to move away from halfway houses to much smaller, privately run sober-living or transition homes.
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Justice reforms take hold, the inmate population plummets, and Philadelphia closes a notorious jail - The

Justice reforms take hold, the inmate population plummets, and Philadelphia closes a notorious jail - The | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
The American criminal justice system’s gradual realization that too many people are in jail needlessly just got a large, visible boost from the city of Philadelphia. The city announced last week that it would close its notorious 91-year-old House of Correction jail because reforms begun two years ago have dropped the city’s jail population by 33 percent, without causing any increase in crime or chaos.
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Fresno County Jail | recidivism | inmate services | The Fresno Bee

Fresno County Jail | recidivism | inmate services | The Fresno Bee | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
The Transition from Jail to Community program at the Fresno County Jail provides training and services to inmates, reducing recidivism.
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DHS reveals dozens of MS-13, other gang members released by 'sanctuary' policies

DHS reveals dozens of MS-13, other gang members released by 'sanctuary' policies | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Dozens of gang members, some of whom belonged to the notorious MS-13, were shielded from deportation and released due to sanctuary policies last year, according to newly released stats from the Department of Homeland Security.
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Alternative justice system now covers Mi'kmaq fisheries offences on P.E.I. | CBC News

Alternative justice system now covers Mi'kmaq fisheries offences on P.E.I. | CBC News | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
In a first for Atlantic Canada, the Mi'kmaq Confederacy of P.E.I.'s restorative justice system is being expanded to cover offences under the federal Fisheries Act.

The Confederacy, Lennox Island First Nation, Abegweit First Nation, Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC) held a formal ceremony to sign the agreement on Tuesday. It builds on the MCPEI Indigenous justice program already in place.

There is a similar agreement on the West Coast, but this is the first agreement of its kind in Atlantic Canada.
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Teenage Vandals Were Sentenced to Read Books. Here’s What One Learned. - The New York Times

Teenage Vandals Were Sentenced to Read Books. Here’s What One Learned. - The New York Times | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
After they defaced a historic black schoolhouse with racist graffiti, they were ordered to read. Not all the authors were happy about this.
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The Opposite of D.A.R.E – DPA Launches New High School Drug Education Curriculum in a NYC School

The Opposite of D.A.R.E – DPA Launches New High School Drug Education Curriculum in a NYC School | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Safety First started out as a resource for parents to talk to their teens about drugs and has now evolved into a curriculum designed to be implemented in 9th and 10th grade high school health classes. It is based in the principles of harm reduction and consists of 14 interactive lessons covering how we define a ‘drug,’ how drugs work in the body, their effects, risks and benefits of five major drug classes, and the impact of drug policy on personal and community health.

Safety First is the culmination of almost 20 years of work in youth drug issues by DPA’s Dr. Marsha Rosenbaum, as well as many other DPA staffers. I am proud to have joined that group by guiding Safety First in its first real-world pilot and evaluation last month at Bard High School Early College Manhattan. For the first time ever in a U.S. public school, students are receiving a science and harm reduction-based education about drugs.
Rob Duke's insight:

We've long known D.A.R.E., though popular, wasn't effective at deterring drug use in kids.  Now there's a similar program that takes a different approach.

 

Now enrolling for Summer and Fall classes. Univ. of Alaska-Fairbanks:  Ranked online degrees in Justice (B.A.) and Justice Administration (M.A.).  The only Justice degrees built around the concepts of Restorative Justice.  Fully online and blended classes available:

uaf.edu/justice

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'She's not to be vilified': Utah trooper forgives motorist who struck him on side of the road

'She's not to be vilified': Utah trooper forgives motorist who struck him on side of the road | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Dashcam video shows the trooper flying through the air after he was hit.
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Dorothy R. Cook 's curator insight, March 28, 2:49 AM

Thank you Lord God for forgiveness of being wronged or harmed. Lord God Thank you Thank you for your ways are not our ways. 

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Dallas could be part of a smart way to bring ex-offenders back into life outside of prison  | Editorials

Dallas could be part of a smart way to bring ex-offenders back into life outside of prison  | Editorials | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Texas has worked hard to earn a reputation for being tough on crime. But sometimes the toughest part about curbing criminal behavior is fosterin
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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 4:05 PM
It is great to see a state that is known for being tough on crime consider new alternatives that could ultimately help achieve a goal that most people strive to achieve: less crime. It is unfortunate that is has taken this long for so many people to jump on board with restorative justice and to realize that the factors that lead to a person's arrest have not been addressed and these factors are exacerbated when a person has a criminal record added to the mix.
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Ambitious New Report Says It’s Time to Rethink the Nation’s Juvenile Probation Systems |

Ambitious New Report Says It’s Time to Rethink the Nation’s Juvenile Probation Systems | | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it


Written by Celeste Fremon
For more than a decade, the nation’s juvenile justice systems have steadily cut back on unnecessary use of incarceration for young people. The reduction in the use of youth lock-ups have been good for kids and for public safety. Reforms that resulted in incarcerating fewer kids, statistically improve the chances of success for youth when they become adults, while also corresponding with the steady decline in juvenile crime during the same period.
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Victim Initiated Restorative Justice (VIRJ)-Contact

Victim Initiated Restorative Justice (VIRJ)-Contact | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
RJI is expanding its outreach to victims of crime to encourage victims to step forward and choose restorative justice. If you do not know what restorative justice is or want more information about …
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Why we need to face our mortality - BBC Ideas

Why we need to face our mortality - BBC Ideas | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
A video about death and dying featuring author Kevin Toolis, who describes his father's wake and discusses how the Irish know how to do a 'good' death.
Rob Duke's insight:

This is a restorative ritual...I'd bet many indigenous societies have their own versions of this...from the Navajo "sings" to the Irish funeral.

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‘Last stop’ school cuts absences in half with social, emotional focus - by l_waxmann - May 6, 2018

‘Last stop’ school cuts absences in half with social, emotional focus - by l_waxmann - May 6, 2018 | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
On a Tuesday morning, Alba Perez was the only student sitting inside of a classroom at Civic Center Secondary School, but she wasn’t alone. Two teachers an
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Restorative justice seen as a critical piece of criminal justice reform

Restorative justice seen as a critical piece of criminal justice reform | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
Restorative justice should be advocated as a key element in criminal justice reform, according to participants at an April 25 conference in Washington sponsored by the Catholic Mobilizing Network
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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 3:13 PM
There is such a loss of opportunity in most prisons in the country. The potential to have them be a facility for learning and healing is lost, which is unfortunate because some level of education with a benefit of being in a place where a person can develop coping skills and better understand current patterns of behavior, how they are damaging, and work towards personal goals could reduce the likelihood for many prisoners to re offend. I know it would probably never end up being totally seamless process in terms of developing this kind of environment but there is a lot of potential for jails and prisons to give people the skills to succeed in life and not end up returning. That being said, I generally get nervous when faith-based programs are incorporated into programs due to the exclusive nature of some religious practices, but I think it is incredibly beneficial to have multiple avenues of inspiration and tools when working with people. What works for one person or one group won't necessarily work for everyone.
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The Yes Loitering Project Asks Kids Of Color To Rethink Public Space

The Yes Loitering Project Asks Kids Of Color To Rethink Public Space | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
This project helps kids understand how many spaces they’re excluded from, and then asks them to imagine new kinds of public spaces that would serve them better.
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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 3:27 PM
There is definitely a nature of unwantedness for many teenagers when it comes to time outside of school and away from home. When I was a teenager, my friends and I liked going to the park and playing "hot lava." One day the cops were called on us and we had to leave. There wasn't really too many places that we could congregate outside on base, short of hanging out in the woods-- which no one wanted to do because if you were caught there it would be assumed that you were doing something wrong. We were just odd teenagers that wore a lot of black and liked spending time at the park. And that was without the added issues that come with being a person of color so I cannot imagine the severity in which this kind of prejudice exists within larger cities and in more diverse communities.
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OC District Attorney files lawsuit accusing California Board of Parole Hearings of violating victim’s rights –

OC District Attorney files lawsuit accusing California Board of Parole Hearings of violating victim’s rights – | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
The Orange County District Attorney’s Office has filed a lawsuit against the state parole board, alleging that a parole hearing for a man convicted of killing his friend by beating him and to…
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Tough love falls out of fashion in America’s schools - Discipline and punish

Tough love falls out of fashion in America’s schools - Discipline and punish | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
In the 1990s school districts began adopting strict “zero-tolerance” policies for even minor infractions. One young pupil was suspended for chewing his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun; a nine-year-old was made to undergo psychiatric evaluation after threatening to use a rubber band to shoot a bit of paper at a schoolmate; a six-year-old was suspended for bringing a toenail-clipper to school.

Black pupils were nearly four times as likely to receive a suspension as whites in the 2013-2014 school year, the latest for which data are available. The same racial imbalances exist even for pre-school, where pupils are usually four years old or younger, and they have grown over time. The Obama administration issued guidelines noting that disciplinary policies could be racially discriminatory if they had a “disparate impact” on minorities—even if they were enforced even-handedly. This scared many districts into rewriting their rules to avoid a federal investigation.

Several complicating factors outside the control of schools, like the greater exposure of black children to poverty, crime and eviction, could account for their elevated rates of suspension and expulsion. One of the cleverest studies to try and assess actual racial bias used data on school fights between white pupils and black ones in the state of Louisiana, and calculated the differences in punishment. The authors found only a very slight disparity—the black pupils were suspended for an additional 0.05 days, compared with whites. The idea that there is a school-to-prison pipeline for young black boys, a phrase often used by reformers, is a bit shaky too. National statistics show that only 0.63% of public-school children are arrested at school or referred to the police.

Going exclusive

“It would be the easiest thing in the world to cut the suspension rate to 0% tomorrow,” says Jon Clark, co-director of the Brooke Charter Schools, a well-regarded network in Boston. But simply refusing to suspend misbehaving children would be damaging for their classmates, whose learning would deteriorate in the face of disruption, and for their teachers, whose jobs would be made much more difficult.

Yet many schools are already turning to less punitive schemes. One programme, called Positive Behavioural Interventions and Support (PBIS), tries to improve schools by explicitly teaching good conduct as though it were any other subject. Another strategy, known as restorative justice, does not take offending children out of the classroom but teaches them to acknowledge that others have been harmed by their actions and then to make a plan to put things right. Both approaches seem to result in better behaviour.

High-performing charters have often been criticised for their strict disciplinary codes, which detractors claim are used to force difficult children out, thereby improving scores. That criticism may be dated, as many charters have revised their policies to be less severe. “We don’t do militaristic discipline—one of our main themes is love,” says Scott Gordon, the CEO of Mastery Schools, a network of 25 charters in Philadelphia and Camden, New Jersey, which uses restorative justice. Those who do misbehave are moved to a “peace corner” and then to a “restorative conference”.

KIPP charter schools, which acquired a reputation for excellent results and strictly regulated behaviour, has now relaxed its attitude. The network is “getting rid of its focus on detention and demerits” in favour of recognising “curiosity, grit and resourcefulness”, says Richard Barth, the organisation’s CEO. KIPP’s Philadelphia schools stopped using the “bench”, where misbehaving pupils were made to sit apart from classmates, in 2009, and has not expelled a pupil for several years, says Marc Mannella, the head of the regional office. Behaviour is kept in check in other ways. At KIPP Philadelphia Elementary, eight-year-old pupils practise centring themselves for the day ahead with a yoga session.

This article appeared in the United States section of the print edition under the headline "Discipline and punish"
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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 2:59 PM
Anytime there is a "zero tolerance" for something it reduces that chance for any level of mediation. It takes away the ability to have any sort of explanation for the situation that may not truly fall under that the policy of violence. It makes sense to convey the seriousness of violence to children but I don't think that taking children out of school for having toenail clippers or eating a pop tart into the shape of a gun is really effective in conveying the right message.
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When an Email Exchange Turns Ugly

When an Email Exchange Turns Ugly | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it

It was Monday morning, and Lee opened his inbox to find an email from his manager: “Lee, I’ve decided to have Carlos present to the governing board, instead of you. I’m sure you’re good with this.”

Lee had spent the entire weekend preparing for the presentation. Not only did he know the numbers inside and out, he was also excited to get some face time with the board. Performing well would be a good move for his career. So, no, Lee wasn’t really “good with this.” He was crushed, defeated, and felt betrayed. But could he really say that in an email? And if he did, would anything change?

We’ve all had surprises like this show up in our email. I call them “email landmines.” Hidden among most of the safe emails we receive each day are a handful of digital doozies that quickly turn conversation into conflict.

Below are six categories of email landmines you’ve likely seen before. These seemingly innocent communications signal that an otherwise routine exchange is about to escalate.

Drive by: When someone uses email to make a demand or announce a controversial decision and hopes nobody responds. While it may be an honest mistake when there is ambiguity over who owns decision rights, it feels like the sender is intruding on your turf.
Drama dodging: When someone uses email to avoid the “people side” of a conflict. They’d rather interact with the keyboard than with a coworker. Again, many of us get so caught up in our tasks that we forget we’re dealing with people. But the end result of these emails is that the recipient often feels ignored or disrespected.
Wearing a wire: Using email as an underhanded way to get everything in writing, perhaps to create a sharable paper trail. This landmine may also include the naïve sharing of sensitive information that has no place in a written exchange.
Pontificate on a position: When someone lays out their arguments in excruciating detail so as to not have to deal with questions, disagreements, or interruptions. There’s a time and place to flesh out your logic in writing. But typically, email is not it. It can be infuriating to open an email to find a five-paragraph treatise.
Convenience mail: Using email because the alternatives would require scheduling a meeting, making a call, or simply getting up from the chair. We all make this error from time to time. After all, one of email’s most winning virtues is convenience. However, when you’re on the receiving end, these emails feel inconsiderate, unnecessary, and self-important.
Typed tirade: When someone launches an attack from the safety of their cubicle, saying things they’d never dare say in person. We’re all familiar with these because most of us have been guilty of doing it.
We can understand these landmines better if we look at them as dialogue disrupters. Successful email exchanges involve dialogue. We use the exchange to add to a pool of shared meaning. The more information we have in the pool, the better prepared we are to make decisions and get results.

These six landmines violate two important assumptions underlying constructive dialogue: mutual purpose and mutual respect.

Mutual purpose is the entry condition for a meaningful exchange of ideas. If you can’t align around what you’re trying to achieve, then you’re likely to end up with competition and strife. These email landmines signal a selfish focus, at the expense of common goals, that often shut down dialogue.

Mutual respect is the continuance condition for dialogue. Constructive conversation will cease if you show disrespect, disgust, or contempt for others. These landmines all signal some level of disrespect, and will prevent an honest exchange.

When mutual purpose or mutual respect is violated, people feel defensive, unsafe, or hurt. The temptation is to respond in kind, with an attack of your own. That’s how email exchanges escalate into unhealthy conflict. Luckily, there are strategies to handle these landmines.

Schedule a call. Don’t respond to the content of the email. Instead, reply and ask to schedule a call. Use a text message, if the issue is time-sensitive. “Got your email, let’s talk. Would 2 PM work for you?”
Meet face-to-face. An in-person meeting is the gold standard. Seeing each other’s faces while you talk is far more important than people realize. It helps you understand what others are thinking and feeling, as well as what they are saying. If that’s not possible, then use a video conferencing app.
Begin with purpose. Diffuse the negative tone by stating up front that you want a solution that works for all parties. This turns the debate into a dialogue where there are no winners and losers. “I’d like to find a solution that works for both of us. I think a conversation will help us get there.”
Demonstrate respect. You’ve already seen signals of disrespect. Counter them by declaring your respect. “I care about your concerns, and I value your opinion.”
Focus on facts. As you begin to discuss the content, avoid making judgments or stating conclusions. Instead, stick closely to the facts: details and data. Focus on any gaps between what you expected and what you observed.
Quickly check for understanding and agreement. At VitalSmarts, we call the beginning of any conversation “the hazardous half-minute,” because you’ve got only 30 seconds to state your case before asking for the other person’s point of view. If you talk for any longer, the other person will feel lectured to.
Email can be an efficient and convenient way to communicate. But when digital communication leads to conflict and slow decision making, it’s time to get out from behind the screen and have a dialogue.

Rob Duke's insight:

On either end of my career, I had bosses that would send me what I would "affectionately" call "letterbombs".  The first one would leave these in my mail box and they'd be outrageous propositions or orders.  These culminated with a demand to void a citation for a friend of the mayor, which I refused to do.  This resulted in him throwing the citation across the desk at me and telling me to void it if I knew what was good for me (I can say LOL now, but it was tense at the time); which, I unwisely countered with a threat to drag said boss over the desk and arrest if he ever threatened me again (he was a big guy and I was a big guy, so it was an equal exchange).  He didn't get me then, but within about 8 months, he'd soured the council against me and I, unhappily, left the job.

I asked another Chief of Police what he'd have done in this situation and he said, "Listen, you have to know what battles to fight.  I worked there for several years and I would have just paid that ticket myself and avoided the whole issue."  I have to say that that was not a very satisfying solution.

Over the years, I developed a style where I sat on my emotions more and learned to ask questions that identified the issues involved so that we could mutually explore alternatives that still satisfied our conjunctive interests.  So, by the time I was faced with another situation like the first, I had the tools to defuse these bombs rather than have them explode in my face.  This article gives a great set of tools to do this.

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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 3:57 PM
Email can be a very tricky form of communication. There's a fine line between effective and clear communication and coming across uncaring and unprofessional. As a student worker and a young women I have found it difficult to sound professional, confident, while still sounding like a student.. the point of my job as a student ambassador is to give an authentic perspective as a student to prospective students. Because emailing is one of the most important tasks and occurs daily, I have had a lot of practice over the past two years. After reading this article it really made me consider how my communication skills have been portrayed to others via this frustrating medium. I have also considered some emails that I have received over the past couple years and have began questioning if some of the emails were email landmines and there have been. While in some cases I kick myself for not standing up for myself more and responding to the email, in general a lot of situations avoided escalation from me refraining from responding.
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Nonviolent Communication - Wikipedia

Nonviolent Communication - Wikipedia

Nonviolent Communication (abbreviated NVC, also called Compassionate Communication or Collaborative Communication) is an approach to nonviolent living developed by Marshall Rosenberg beginning in the 1960s. It is based on the idea that all human beings have the capacity for compassion and only resort to violence or behavior that harms themselves and others when they do not recognize more effective strategies for meeting needs.

Marshall Rosenberg lecturing in a Nonviolent Communication workshop (1990). Nonviolent Communication (abbreviated NVC, also called Compassionate Communication or Collaborative Communication[1][2]) is an approach to nonviolent living developed by Marshall Rosenberg beginning in the 1960s.[3] It is...
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One of the theoretical underpinnings of RJ practice.

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LEAD drug treatment program helping man turn his life around: 'I - KPTV - FOX 12

LEAD drug treatment program helping man turn his life around: 'I - KPTV - FOX 12 | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
A pilot program in Portland that offers treatment option instead of jail time for low-level drug offenders has reached the one year mark.
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Shaylee Shocklee's comment, May 4, 4:18 PM
This really seems like a great program. People struggling with addiction offer a major additional challenge when restorative justice is considered as an alternative to the current justice system. It is something that everyone in restorative justice seems to acknowledge but is unable, at this time at least, to fully address because it is such a time consuming challenge. It generally takes about three years for those struggling with heroine addiction to come out of it on the other side , this 15 week program could help to shorten that struggle or start that process on a healthy and positive note.
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In latest edict, Philly DA Larry Krasner tells prosecutors to seek lighter sentences, estimate costs of incarceration

In latest edict, Philly DA Larry Krasner tells prosecutors to seek lighter sentences, estimate costs of incarceration | Alternative Dispute Resolution, Mediation, and Restorative Justice | Scoop.it
In a bold new policy announcement, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner has instructed prosecutors to seek lower sentences, decline certain classes of criminal charges, and explain why taxpayers should spend money to incarcerate people.
- Chris Palmer, Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News
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