New Mediators and mediation users often ask about the Civil Mediation Council. We are proud to be a registered CMC mediation provider and training provider. What does that actually mean?
The Civil Mediation Council was set up in the 2000s by a group of inspirational pioneering mediators to act as a focal point for mediation in the UK.
In the early 2000s Mediator and barrister Jonathan Dingle lead an initiative to build a single unified voice for civil and commercial mediation in the United Kingdom. In 2003 the the CMC was established as an unincorporated association.
Since then it has grown to become the largest body of mediators in the UK. It recently (2019) changed its constitution to provide for a slimmer down board. Up until that point ProMediate was a board member of the CMC. Sir David Foskett is the current Chair, following on from Sir Alan Ward, both retired judges. So the links with the judicial system are strong. It became a charitable company a few years before. As set out on the website its raison d’etre is as follows:
“The CMC is a charity which aims to promote the resolution of conflicts and disputes by encouraging the use of mediation and other dispute resolution techniques and methods and to advance the education of the public in matters related to this.”
Since the MOJ closed down the mediation directory on the Justice website, the CMC is the guardian and collator of the directory. It merged with the Professional Mediators’ Association in 2017 and he CMC is increasingly being seen by Government and the market as the body responsible for representing civil, commercial and workplace mediation.
A link to the website can be found here: https://civilmediation.org/for-the-public/about-mediation/
To be a member, mediators have to abide by a code of conduct and minimum standards. They have to complete three observations and completed a registered training course before joining. One of this observations can be a live mediation demonstration otherwise known as a “mock mediation.”
As it says on the website:
“Although there is no statutory regulation of mediators, the CMC runs a system of voluntary regulation for civil/commercial and workplace mediators and providers. Mediators and providers registered with the CMC abide by a Code of Conduct, have been trained to acceptable industry standards, have suitable insurance, carry out continuing training and development, and offer access to a complaints process if needed.”
The sister body of the CMC is the Family Mediation Council, which as the name suggests, deals with family mediation training, regulation and registration.
Although it is not obligatory to be a member of the CMC some organisations like NHSR insist on mediators that it uses being members as it guarantees minimum standards such as having professional indemnity insurance. Moreover it has a basic complaints system so that there is some recourse if a mediator’s Conduct is called into question.
Joining the CMC enables one to meet other mediators, attend training, keep oneself informed of developments and have a say in developing the mediation profession in the UK.
There is still a long way to go in the development of the mediation profession, not least because there is no statutory regulation of mediators or any protection over the title of “mediator” unlike “ombudsman” or “solicitor.”