Police-Citizen Mediation Training


Laura Elliott, Media Representative/Jefferson County Mediation Services

Jefferson County to Provide Important Community-Police Mediation Training

Meeting metro-wide interest and need, Jefferson County Mediation Services offering course to professional mediators

Golden, CO (April 11, 2016) Jefferson County Mediation Services (JCMS) announces it will partner with Denver-based OvalOptions to train professional mediators in the specialized area of police-citizen conflict resolution – in response to the growing needs between citizens and law enforcement to manage disputes and conduct effective mediation.

The two-day training takes place May 5-6th  at the Jefferson County District Attorney’s building and will be conducted by consultants from Range Mediation & Consulting – a Portland Oregon-based firm offering police-citizen mediation training, among other services.  Conflict Consultants Louise Nielson and Juanita Range provide community-police mediation training in Oregon as well as the Denver area and will bring their specialized learning tools and materials to Jefferson County for the two-day training course.  Officers from local Jeffco municipalities, including Golden and Wheat Ridge, are slated to be on hand for authentic role-playing scenarios.

Some areas of Colorado, including the City of Denver, have professional mediators trained in managing citizen-police disputes. Within Jeffco, the Wheat Ridge Police Department and Jeffco Sheriff’s Office already offer mediation for officers as an option when members of the public file complaints against them. JCMS Executive Director Mark Loye would like more police departments to offer mediation between citizens and their employees and wants to increase the number of cases his agency manages.

“Conflict between citizens and law enforcement can happen anywhere. We want the public to know that we are meeting the needs of this growing conflict area by training our staff and our mediators with some of the best methods in the country,” Loye stated.

On the national as well as the community level, distrust between citizens and law enforcement is in the forefront of society and media attention.  Feelings that police were discourteous, biased, violated one’s constitutional rights, or used excessive force frequently lead to mistrust and a reluctance to cooperate or call on them in times of emergency. Often the public is unaware of facts, procedures or constraints the officer is juggling while trying to keep members of the public and themselves safe. A successful community-police mediation program provides a method to resolve complaints that alleviate misunderstandings, mistrust, anger and resentment. Mediation programs help improve community-police relations and enhance neighborhood safety.

The Advanced Mediator Training: Law Enforcement-Citizen Dialogue takes place May 5-6, 2016 on the Jefferson County Campus in Golden, CO and provides practicing mediators with the knowledge, tools and skills necessary to manage disputes between law enforcement officers and citizens.  Cost for the two-day training is $399 and includes all materials, lunch, beverages and snacks; for attorneys enrolled in the training, course has been approved for general Continuing Legal Education credits.  For more information, contact Brian Beck, Help@OvalOptions.com.

About Jefferson County Mediation Services:  Based in Golden, CO, Jefferson County Mediation Services (JCMS) is the most comprehensive and innovative community mediation program in Colorado, providing free mediation services for most areas of conflict including workplace disputes; neighbor-neighbor conflicts over noise, animals and property lines; contract disputes; landlord/tenant issues; truancy and other school problems; code enforcement issues; and family issues such as parenting and eldercare. For more than 22 years, JCMS has proven that people who invest in the process of mediation are successful and satisfied with the results.

Contact JCMS at JeffcoMediation@gmail.com to request mediation, download the mediation request form available at www.jeffcomediation.com  or call 303-271-5060 to discuss your situation with a staff member.  JCMS also provides speakers and informational talks such as “How to Deal with Difficult People” for professional staff meetings and clubs.

About OvalOptions, LLC: Based in Denver, CO, OvalOptions is a consulting firm focused on mediation and other dispute resolution services operating in conjunction, parallel and outside the court system. OvalOptions helps clients find the most appropriate solutions for their situations, including, if necessary, referring to outside services. You can find them online at www.OvalOptions.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ovaloptions or follow on Twitter: @OvalOptions.

About Range Mediation and Consulting Services:  Range Mediation & Consulting is a Portland based Mediation and Consulting firm providing training, workshops, consulting, and coaching services. Their services combine human compassion with reliable research on organizations, people, conflict, and communication. This powerful combination is the foundation for their unique and effective approach to human relationship building and problem solving. Executive Trainer/Facilitator Louise Neilson has been mediating since 1989, and has 14 years of experience with police/citizen mediations. For more information on Range Mediation and consulting Services or Trainers Louise Neilson and Juanita Range, go to www.RangeMediation.com.