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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 50696 Find in a Library
Title: C R S (COMMUNITY RELATIONS SERVICE) - DISPUTE RESOLUTION THROUGH MEDIATION
Journal: AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION JOURNAL  Volume:64  Dated:(AUGUST 1978)  Pages:1250-1254
Author(s): R F GREENWALD
Corporate Author: American Bar Association
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 5
Sponsoring Agency: American Bar Association
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE WORK OF THE COMMUNITY RELATIONS SERVICE OF THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT, WHICH ACTS AS A THIRD-PARTY INTERMEDIARY IN CIVIL RIGHTS CASES, IS DESCRIBED. ITS USE IN DISPUTES AT THE LOUISIANA PENITENTIARY IS PRAISED.
Abstract: THE COMMUNITY RELATIONS SERVICE (CRS) WAS SET UP IN 1964 TO MEDIATE CIVIL RIGHTS DISPUTES. ONE OF ITS FIRST TASKS WAS TO ATTEMPT TO RESOLVE A SERIES OF LAWSUITS INITIATED BY INMATES AGAINST ADMINISTRATORS OF THE LOUISIANA STATE PENITENTIARY AT ANGOLA -- LAWSUITS COVERING EVERYTHING FROM ACCESS TO SHOWER FACILITIES AND HAIR STYLES TO LOCKDOWN ABUSES, ISOLATION CELLS, MEDICAL ATTENTION, AND INMATE CORRESPONDENCE. THE FINAL SETTLEMENT, SIGNED IN OCTOBER 1972, COVERED 28 ITEMS AND RESULTED IN A BROAD SPECTRUM OF CHANGE. THE MOST IMPORTANT CHANGE, HOWEVER, WAS NOT IN RULES AND REGULATIONS BUT IN ATTITUDES OF BOTH INMATES AND ADMINISTRATIVE PERSONNEL. SINCE THEN CRS HAS BEEN CALLED UPON TO MEDIATE A NUMBER OF OTHER PRISON LAWSUITS. THE MEDIATION PROCESS IS DESCRIBED BRIEFLY. THE VOLUNTARY NATURE AND THE CONFIDENTIALITY OF THE SESSIONS ASSURES A MORE CONSTRUCTIVE LOOK AT THE ISSUES THAN IS POSSIBLE IN AN OPEN ADVERSARY COURT SITUATION. THE MEDIATOR OFTEN LAYS THE GROUNDWORK FOR SETTLEMENT, ACTING AS COURIER, INTERPRETER, CATALYST, AND GENTLE PERSUADER. HE ALSO CAN CALL IN OUTSIDE RESOURCES. CRS HAS FACILITIES IN BOSTON, NEW YORK, PHILADELPHIA, ATLANTA, CHICAGO, KANSAS CITY, DALLAS, DENVER, SAN FRANCISCO, AND SEATTLE. ITS USE IN DISPUTE RESOLUTION IS URGED. LAWYERS, ADMINISTRATORS, AND ELECTED OFFICIALS INVOLVED IN SOME FORM OF CROSS-INTEREST HOSTILITY OR CONFRONTATION ARE ALSO URGED TO EXPERIMENT WITH EITHER A PUBLIC OR PRIVATE MEDIATION SERVICE. MEDIATION IS CALLED THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SUCCESSFUL PROBLEM SOLVING AND COSTLY TIME-CONSUMING LITIGATION.
Index Term(s): California; Colorado; Correctional institutions (adult); Georgia (USA); Illinois; Inmate grievances; Inmate staff relations; Louisiana; Massachusetts; Mediation; Missouri; New York; Pennsylvania; State correctional facilities; Texas; US Department of Justice
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50696

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