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Mediation Aimed at Preventing Strike

Saturday, July, 27, 2013

In Buffalo, New York, mediation is being attempted as an alternative to resolving the dispute between union paramedics and EMTs and Rural/Metro Ambulance.  The goal is to prevent a strike that would influence the lives of the many people who depend on those employees around the state. 


Disagreements in parts of the contract have drawn a line between the two parties, which is what prompted the labor union to approve a 10-day strike notice if an agreement cannot be reached, although that contract expired recently.  Rural/Metro Ambulance states that they have created a 30-day contract extension with a plan to manage emergency services needs if the strike moves forward.


When critical public services are halted by a strike, citizens can face significant challenges in getting the care they need.  For the ambulance company, however, it’s likely that alternative plans will at least address some of the emergency care needs for the impacted areas.  Confusion, however, might lead to delays or lack of consistent protocol, which might end up harming the patients who depend on reliable emergency services across the area. 


Mediation is becoming increasingly popular to address disputes where the consequences of action or court dates can be problematic.  Although most experiences in mediation relate to family law, the tool is becoming more popular in other fields of law, including business disputes, large personal injury class-action claims, and employment disputes.  Mediation offers parties an alternative to typical dispute resolution, and it’s a solution that is generally more expedient and less expensive than traditional methods. 


It’s likely that the popularity of mediation will continue to expand across the legal industry as more people reach solutions outside of court, reducing the burden of court staff and judges who are overloaded with disputes.  Mediation continues to grow and change its mold, providing flexible options for resolution.