[outside mediation, professional mediation, third party arbitration, arbitrator, conflict resolution]
The following information has been provided by GreenThumb. Additional information can be found in the GreenThumb Gardener’s Handbook (2021, pp. 85-86, see Garden Bylaws Records > References for the link to the Handbook).
GreenThumb generally does not involve itself in garden disputes, but may make arrangements between the community garden, garden members, and OATH’S Center for Creative Conflict Resolution (see below) under certain circumstances.
OATH’S Center for Creative Conflict Resolution
(OATH – City of New York, Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings)
The Center for Creative Conflict Resolution utilizes the Restorative Circle method of mediation / conflict resolution.
For information on restorative circles, see https://livingjusticepress.org/what-do-we-mean-by-circle/.
The Center for Creative Conflict Resolution “recently partnered with NYC Parks GreenThumb to provide community building and conflict support services to community garden members.” [July 2021] When inviting the Center for Creative Conflict Resolution, they may send two people as circle keepers and act as facilitators “in hosting a restorative circle for your community garden.” A “restorative circle is a talking circle, where we will co-create a space for you to connect and reflect collectively on what has been going on as members of your community garden. With this in mind, the circle keepers will ask a series of reflective prompts, engage in a values exercise, and, with the participants’ input co-create group guidelines to set the foundation needed for connection, community, trust building, listening and deepening the conversation as we go. One circle will not be sufficient to uncover and resolve the (conflicts and) issues that have been present in your community garden. Rather, we intend for the circle to be an invitation to relate to each other in a different way that may lead to collective efforts in problem solving.“ “Since the talking circle will take place in your community garden, we ask that you set up a circle of chairs for the number of people that will be present. If you need assistance in doing that, please reach out to _(your contact at GreenThumb or CCCR)_ for support. We also invite you to bring your favorite snack or dish to share with the group. This is an invitation only and if you choose to do so, it will help in setting up the space in a different way than you may be accustomed to meeting.”
Below are other professional mediation services and resources, information provided by GreenThumb:
NY Peace Institute offers free mediation services with professionally trained mediators and their services can be accessed by filling out the form on their website here: https://nypeace.org/mediation/
The NYC Transformative Justice Hub is a group that provides political education for anyone interested in transformative justice and community accountability and provides a space for people actively engaged in the work to process and get consultations and support. More information about accessing their resources is here: https://nyctjhub.com/public_whatwedo.html
Turning Towards Each Other: A Conflict Workbook is a guide to working through conflict in groups in transformative ways.
PDF (56 pages, 7.8 MB): Turning Towards Each Other Conflict Workbook.
Or, visit: https://turningtowardseachother.medium.com/turning-towards-each-other-embracing-the-gifts-of-conflict-for-social-change-ea28502016b7
Dealing with Disagreements is an attached handout from GreenThumb about making meetings work when disagreements arise.
PDF (6 pages, 159 KB): Dealing with Disagreements.
Ten Strategies for Conflict Resolution is a [1 page] handout given out at past GreenThumb webinars and workshop about transformative justice and conflict resolution.
The 1-page is below as an image. Click on the image to enlarge it.
Or, PDF (1 page, 48 KB): 10 Strategies for Conflict Resolution.