WANT TO GET INVOLVED?
BECOME A MEDIATOR
Apply to be a Mediator with the New Orleans Community-Police Mediation Program!
We are excited to announce the New Orleans Community-Police Mediation Program (CPMP) is accepting applications for new mediators. The program aims to improve relationships and build understanding between the community and the New Orleans Police Department. We provide community members and police officers the unique opportunity to have a face-to-face conversation to address conflict in their interactions with each other, be heard and understood, hear each other’s perspectives, and come to their own agreements about moving forward
The CPMP is a program of the Office of the Independent Police Monitor (OIPM), an independent, civilian police oversight agency whose mission is to improve police service to the community, citizen trust in the NOPD, and officer safety and working conditions.
We will be selecting 15 new residents to join the program and serve as Community-Police Mediators. We are looking for applicants who are committed to social change, self-determination, community-building, public safety, conflict resolution, and using meaningful dialogue to make New Orleans a safe, strong city. This is an opportunity to be part of democratizing policing in our city, improving accountability by giving space for civilians to directly address officer misconduct, and using a transformative justice approach to create change in our public safety and criminal justice system.
Applicants must be able to fulfill the following requirements and commitments:
- Lives in New Orleans area
- Commit to serving at least two (2) years as a mediator, from May 2020 to May 2022
- Available and committed to mediating AT LEAST five (5) cases per year. Mediations take place Monday through Friday between 9am and 7pm and require 3 hours of time. We try to schedule mediations as quickly as possible once a case is referred, so mediators must have enough flexibility to do a mediation with about 4-7 days’ notice. Please note, the majority of mediations occur between 10am-4pm during the weekdays, so it is essential that you can make yourself available during these hours.
- Attend the mandatory 50-hour training, which will take place over six (6) days, on May 8-10 and May 15-17, 2020, 8:30am -5:00pm on Fridays and Saturdays and 12:00pm-8:00pm on Sundays
- Attend at least four (4) professional development sessions throughout the year, which take place from 6:00-9:00pm on weekday evenings
Other characteristics desired in applicants include:
- Empathic communication and listening skills
- The ability to hold space for intense emotions
- The capacity to demonstrate competence, composure and neutrality (open to hearing others’ opinions and perspectives and an ability to put aside one’s own biases)
- Commitment to improving community-police relationships in New Orleans.
- Comfortable with constructive feedback and ability to learn a new process with patience and humility
- In assigning mediators, we seek to match the demographics of our mediators to that of the participants as much as possible, so we seek to recruit mediators with the greatest diversity and range possible of gender, age, race, ethnicity, language, education, sexual orientation, and socio-economic background.
WHAT TO EXPECT AS A MEDIATOR
The OIPM has developed a comprehensive 50-hour training program, which prepares participants to mediate police-community conflict. Training is interactive and hands-on and includes a strong focus on role-playing and coaching to develop the mediators’ skills. The fifteen selected mediators will first attend the mandatory 50-hour training in May (see dates above), in which they will become trained in all aspects of the program, our model of mediation, and how to mediate a case from start to finish. Five NOPD officers will participate in the training as well to assist with role-plays, give mediators a sense of what it is like to mediate with officers, and serve as ambassadors to the program. The training is facilitated by Tracee Ford, one of the country’s top mediation trainers, who serves as the Director of Quality Development at Community Mediation Maryland and has more than 15 years of experience as a mediator and facilitator. OIPM offers the training at no charge to ensure that our mediators reflect the community’s diversity with regard to age, race, income, education, gender, and ethnicity. The training is valued at $2,500 per trainee.
Once trained, the new mediators will join a pool of approximately 20 other trained mediators from previous cohorts and will be eligible to mediate cases. Cases are referred on a rolling basis throughout the year, with an average of 40-50 mediations per year, so approximately one case per week. Once a case is eligible for mediation, the program director emails the pool of mediators with the time, date, and location and asks who is available. The request for mediators typically is sent about 4-7 days in advance of the mediation date. Mediators reply as soon as possible with their availability and are selected based on availability and matching demographics of the participants. We use a co-mediation model, so two mediators are assigned per case. New mediators are paired with more experienced mediators for the first few mediations. Mediations typically occur Monday through Friday between 9am and 7pm, with an occasional Saturday mediation. Mediators should expect a case to take approximately 3 hours (1 hour of prep and debrief and 2 hours for the mediation). Mediations take place at libraries, recreation centers, and non-profit meeting rooms across the city. After each mediation, mediators return surveys and a brief report to the program director and the case is then closed. Mediators are each provided with a $75 stipend per mediation session.
In-service mediation trainings are provided every month, in which mediators develop and practice their skills through role-playing, debriefing challenges and discussing successes from their cases. The Program Director provides feedback and support to mediators on an ongoing basis.
PLEASE NOTE: The OIPM provides extensive mediation training that is valued at $2,500 per person, free of charge. In return, active participation in the program – which means being available to mediate at least 5 cases per year and attending 4 in-service trainings, as listed in the selection criteria above – is required. Before applying, please carefully read the “What to Expect as a Mediator” section and determine whether your schedule and other commitments will allow you to be an active participant in the program given the timing, locations, and turn-around time for scheduling mediations. We have only 15 spots in the program, so we ask for your honesty about your commitment and availability to be an OIPM mediator. Mediators who do not fulfill their commitment can be required to pay back the value of the training on a prorated basis.
APPLICATION PROCESS & DEADLINES
Below is a timeline of our 2020 selection process.
To apply, CLICK HERE to apply online. Or, CLICK HERE to download the application and submit it via email, fax, or mail. Please also share this information widely with any others who you think may be interested and available to serve.
Timeline of Mediator Selection Process and Training
January 15, 2020: Initial call for applications sent out
March 8, 2020: Applications due
March 9-13, 2020: Application review and scheduling of interviews
March 16-27, 2020: Interviews of selected applicants
April 8, 2020: Fifteen new mediators selected. Decision letters sent out via email.
May 8-10, 2020: Mandatory New Mediators Training Part 1 8:30a-5:00p Fri & Sat, 12p-8p Sun
May 15-17, 2020: Mandatory New Mediators Training Part 2, 8:30a-5:00p Fri & Sat, 12p-8p Sun
For more information about the program, please visit: www.communitypolicemediation.org.
For any questions, please contact Mediation Program Director, Jules Griff at 504-304-7886 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anyone can file a complaint of police misconduct with the Independent Police Monitor. Thank you for making your voice heard and being a part of police accountability.
- By phone at 504-309-9799
- By email at email@example.com
- In person/by mail:
2714 Canal Street, Suite 201 (above the Liberty Bank)
New Orleans, LA 70119
Anyone can commend a police officer for good work. Rewarding good policing is a strong contribution toward public safety.
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact the Mediation Program Director, Jules Griff at firstname.lastname@example.org or 504-304-7886.