With the fast-paced world in which we live, it is very likely that you may be involved in some type of dispute. Whether the dispute is at home, at school, at work, or in your community, it can lead to great frustration. Often such disputes end up in court. In court, it is conceivable that the underlying problem may not be resolved and the parties will remain dissatisfied. Mediation provides a forum for individuals to talk out their problems with a neutral individual rather than drag them through the courts. Mediation empowers people to resolve their own problems in a constructive way and enables them to avoid conflict in the future.
In 1983, the State's Attorney for Anne Arundel County recognized that people needed a way to resolve their disputes in an environment less frustrating than a courtroom. Shortly thereafter, the Mediation Center was established to provide citizens with a means to craft solutions to their conflict in consensual, confidential, and creative ways. With offices in Glen Burnie and Annapolis, the center can assist citizens in all parts of the County. Meetings are by appointment and special needs can be accommodated. The Mediation Center may be just the approach you need to resolve your problem without the burden and costs of going to court.
Jocelind Julien, Mediation Director
Jocelind Julien is a highly skilled ADR and EEO practitioner with many years of experience in the field. She mediates and drafts complex settlement agreements for district court criminal cases and federal, state, and local governments' employment discrimination complaints. Ms. Julien's mediations range from small two-party to unit-wide EEO complaints.
Ms. Julien served on Maryland's Equal Opportunity Advisory Committee to review current legislation as it pertains to EEO laws and initiatives and advised agency officials regarding policy development and revisions and implementation; workforce diversity, and affirmative employment practices. Ms. Julien worked with her colleagues to prepare and present testimony before the House and Senate Committees for the Maryland Mediation Confidentiality Act, which was passed October 2013.
Ms. Julien is the past president of the Association for Conflict Resolution (ACR) Maryland Chapter. Her compassion toward human conflict and her ability to facilitate communication between parties and help those in conflict to explore their options in a cooperative environment have created success in resolving disputes. Ms. Julien's strength is her combined ability to work as a neutral facilitator in resolving current conflicts and as a trainer to help manage and prevent future conflicts.
The Mediation Center provides an alternative means of resolving:
Minor types of criminal charges; trespass, telephone abuse, malicious destruction of property, certain types of assault, and the like, before trial, and; Intra-family disputes in which present or former spouses, boy/girlfriends, siblings, parents, or extended family members are caught up in domestic difficulties, and; Incidents arising out of a multitude of neighbor vs. neighbor disputes prior to criminal charges being filed.
What happens in a mediation session?
At a reserved time (either in Annapolis or Glen Burnie) the mediator listens to all parties tell their side of what happened in an effort to understand how the dispute came about, and to learn how each party would like to see the problem resolved. Referrals may be made to agencies in the county to assist the parties in building skills that may be lacking (parenting, budgeting, etc.) Or to experts in the field of individual or family counseling. The Mediator does not decide who is right or wrong; he or she merely assists the parties in coming to an acceptable solution.
What about lawyers?
Parties may bring lawyers if they choose. The sessions are brief - an hour or two depending on the issues involved - and informal. In mediation, the parties play the most important role in resolving the dispute.
When the parties reach a resolution, the agreement is put into brief, written form by the mediator. The parties sign the agreement and they are given a copy. The Assistant State's Attorney assigned to the case(s) will make a recommendation for disposition and that will be communicated to all parties involved.
What is the cost?
This is a service provided by the State's Attorney's Office. There is no cost to you. If you would like to obtain more information on the Mediation Center or would like to use its services, please call 410-260-1870.
Jocelind Julien, Mediation Director
Phone: (410) 260-1870 x 1870
Fax: (410) 260-1343
251 Rowe Blvd.
Annapolis, Maryland 21401