Dispute resolution practice

Mediation

My mediation work involves equalities and human rights complaints and disputes that involve individuals and organisations in the public, not-for-profit and for-profit sectors. I am particularly interested in the addressing disputes that involve disability issues.

I trained as a mediator in 1987 with the Community Justice Center in Queens, New York. Since my initial training I have completed advanced training, including training in mediating discrimination disputes, workplace mediation and online dispute resolution. In 2005 I was accredited by the former umbrella body for not-for-profit mediation, Mediation UK, as part of the Legal Services Commission’s Quality Mark for Mediation. In 2018 I was accredited by the Civil Mediation Council and the College of Mediators under the SEND Mediator Practice Standards.

From 2001 to 2013 I was a panel mediator with the rights-based mediation service developed initially by the Disability Rights Commission. This service focused on mediation of disputes involving claims of disability discrimination on the provision of goods and services (Disability Discrimination Act claims). The service became the Equalities Mediation Service, with a wider brief on equalities and human rights, with the establishment of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

From 2003 to 2021 I was a panel mediator with the London SEN Mediation Service in disputes between parents and young people and schools, local authorities, and Clinical Commissioning Groups. Most of these disputes involved special educational needs, including needs assessments, Education, Health and Care Plans and support at school, as well as communication issues and claims of disability discrimination.

I carry full professional indemnity insurance and complete at least 10 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) annually. I comply with the European Code of Conduct for Mediators.

Ombuds

My work with ombuds schemes includes roles as a non-executive director of Ombudsman Services, the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education, and the Legal Ombudsman, and I served as an independent member of the Validation Committee of the Ombudsman Association for 10 years.

I also manage the ombudsresearch website, which has a blog and resources on research on ombuds.

Complaints investigation and adjudication

I carry out independent review of complaints about organisations and currently hold the following positions: